Opinion (Mike Pence): My Last Days With Donald Trump

Morrison71

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Nov 10, 2006
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Early on New Year's Day, the phone rang. Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert and other Republicans had filed a lawsuit asking a federal judge to declare that I had "exclusive authority and sole discretion" to decide which electoral votes should count. "I don't want to see 'Pence Opposes Gohmert Suit' as a headline this morning," the president said. I told him I did oppose it. "If it gives you the power," he asked, "why would you oppose it?" I told him, as I had many times, that I didn't believe I possessed that power under the Constitution.

"You're too honest," he chided. "Hundreds of thousands are gonna hate your guts. . . . People are gonna think you're stupid."

On Saturday, Jan. 2, I instructed my chief of staff to issue a statement supporting the right of lawmakers to bring objections under the Electoral Count Act. By Sunday morning, the headline "Pence Welcomes Congressional Republicans' Bid to Challenge Electoral Votes" was everywhere. When the president called me that morning, his mood had brightened. "You have gone from very unpopular to popular!" he exclaimed. But then he pressed me again to reject electoral votes unilaterally. "You can be a historic figure," he said, "but if you wimp out, you're just another somebody."
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Mr. Eastman repeatedly qualified his argument, saying it was only a legal theory. I asked, "Do you think I have the authority to reject or return votes?"

He stammered, "Well, it's never been tested in the courts, so I think it is an open question."

At that I turned to the president, who was distracted, and said, "Mr. President, did you hear that? Even your lawyer doesn't think I have the authority to return electoral votes." The president nodded. As Mr. Eastman struggled to explain, the president replied, "I like the other thing better," presumably meaning that I could simply reject electoral votes.

On Jan. 5, I got an urgent call that the president was asking to see me in the Oval Office. The president's lawyers, including Mr. Eastman, were now requesting that I simply reject the electors. I later learned that Mr. Eastman had conceded to my general counsel that rejecting electoral votes was a bad idea and any attempt to do so would be quickly overturned by a unanimous Supreme Court. This guy didn't even believe what he was telling the president.
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The president laid into me. "You'll go down as a wimp," he said. "If you do that, I made a big mistake five years ago!"

But when he said, "You're not protecting our country, you're supposed to support and defend our country!" I calmly reminded him, "We both took an oath to support and defend the Constitution."
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Jerome Silberman

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Oct 30, 2009
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That little AM radio weasel should not be allowed to wriggle out of his role in the Trump fiasco. He did the bare minimum in the 11th hour, and I have to believe it was all in service of his delusion that God will one day make him President of the United States of America.
 
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Fijimn

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May 7, 2008
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Nothing but a bunch of boomers willing to burn the entire thing down just to get their way....
 
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Hoosierhawkeye

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Sep 16, 2008
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Like him or not Mike Pence showed some courage that day in defending democracy.

You can think everything else he did was shitty and was a Trump bootlicker for the entire time and you would probably be right.

But he stopped when the line was finally crossed and stood up to it.
 
Feb 9, 2013
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Would love to read the entire piece, but my reaction to Pence from the snippets is gtfo.

Ok, he did what he was supposed to do. Here’s a gold star.

Sat by and enabled all this BS and only now comes out when finally looks like Trump has been taken down.

F him.
 

Bonerfarts

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Nov 15, 2015
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I don't like Pence or his policies, but he got this one right. Without Pence I believe Jan 6th gets a lot uglier. Possibly the end of American Democracy. I'll always respect him for that.
 

tumorboy

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Sep 24, 2002
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I don't like Pence or his policies, but he got this one right. Without Pence I believe Jan 6th gets a lot uglier. Possibly the end of American Democracy. I'll always respect him for that.
Nancy would have stepped in. And taken care of it.
 

Nole Lou

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Apr 5, 2002
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He did do the bare minimum. But he also did what tons and tons of people insisted nobody associated with Trump would ever do, which is defy him and not let him steal an election. As did tons of Trump elected judges, etc.

He will go down grudgingly appreciated by some, but a hero to nobody. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. Hitch your wagon to Trump and you end up as Bob Barr and Mike Pence, or Rudy Giuliani and Mike Lindell.

(Which is not to say that everyone who served the Trump administration is ruined, but very few who tried to leverage Trump for political gain came out unscathed)
 
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tumorboy

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Sep 24, 2002
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He did do the bare minimum. But he also did what tons and tons of people insisted nobody associated with Trump would ever do, which is defy him and not let him steal an election. As did tons of Trump elected judges, etc.

He will go down grudgingly appreciated by some, but a hero to nobody. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. Hitch your wagon to Trump and you end up as Bob Barr and Mike Pence, or Rudy Giuliani and Mike Lindell.

(Which is not to say that everyone who served the Trump administration is ruined, but very few who tried to leverage Trump for political gain came out unscathed)
Faustian bargain.
 
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Morrison71

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Nov 10, 2006
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He did do the bare minimum. But he also did what tons and tons of people insisted nobody associated with Trump would ever do, which is defy him and not let him steal an election. As did tons of Trump elected judges, etc.
Come on bro. Surely you can tell the difference between Trump’s VP pick in 2016 and one in 2024?

Sure they would both be “associated” with Trump. But Trump has gained a hell of a lot more power since 2016. His next VP will definitely do what Pence wouldn’t in that situation.

If you think otherwise or want to give Pence points for “doing the right thing,” you are a rube.
 

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