Pence says he’ll respect court’s decision on Jan. 6 testimony
Former Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday said that he would respect a court’s decision regarding his testimony in front of the federal grand jury investigating former President Trump’s role in the Jan. 6, 2021 rioting at the Capitol, saying he was not asserting executive privilege to block it.
Pence has thus far refused to comply with a subpoena from Jack Smith, the special counsel in the probe into Trump and Jan. 6.
But Pence said on ABC’s “This Week” that he is not asserting executive privilege to stop from testifying.
Instead, he is arguing that he does not have to testify for his actions on Jan. 6, when the 2020 election was certified despite pressure from Trump, because of the Constitution’s speech and debate clause, which blocks lawmakers from being held legally accountable for anything they say in official legislative proceedings.
“I’ve directed my attorneys to make a strong case in defense of my role as president of the Senate, presiding over a joint session of Congress on that day and in the preparation for that, and we’ll let the courts sort it out,” Pence said. “But I’ve actually never asserted that other matters unrelated to January 6, would otherwise be protected by speech and debate.”
When pressed about whether that meant he would be willing to testify about other things related to Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election, Pence said he would “respect the decisions of the court.”
“As I’ve said, we’re not asserting executive privilege, which may encompass other discussions,” Pence said.
The special prosecutor has started to target some of the members that were closest to the president on the day of the Capitol riots, including his daughter Ivanka Trump and son in law Jared Kushner. The targeting of high-profile witnesses is a signal to some observers that the investigation may be nearing a conclusion.
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