Former Vice President Mike Pence Says He, Donald Trump Don't 'See Eye to Eye' on Capitol Riot
During a dinner hosted by the Hillsborough County Republican Committee in New Hampshire on Thursday, the former vice president said, as shown in a clip broadcast Friday on the Today show, that he and Trump, 74, "have spoken many times since [they] left office" in January.
"And I don't know if we'll ever see eye to eye on that day," added Pence, 61, of the events that saw a mob, encouraged by the former president, cause destruction and violence by marching on the U.S. Capitol.
According to CNN, Pence also said during his Thursday remarks, "January 6 was a dark day in the history of the United States Capitol."
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A senior administration official told CNN and The Hill that the then-president and vice president talked in the Oval Office on Jan. 11, after they reportedly had gone days without speaking following the Jan. 6 riot.
"The two had a good conversation, discussing the week ahead and reflecting on the last four years of the administration's work and accomplishments," the official told the outlets. (White House spokespeople for Trump and Pence did not respond to PEOPLE's request for further details on their conversation at the time.)
Trump had publicly pressured Pence to illegally use his position as vice president to overturn the 2020 election results when Congress met to ratify now-President Joe Biden's victory on the day of the riot.
But Pence released a statement before Congress met, informing both the president and the public that he didn't have the constitutional power — or any intention — to intervene with the country's vote.
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At a rally in Washington, D.C., Trump encouraged his supporters to march on the U.S. Capitol building during a speech in which he complained about his loss, saying, "You'll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength and you have to be strong."
Once there, the mob became violent and ransacked the Capitol building, forcing Pence and other lawmakers to be quickly evacuated and placed under lockdown. Some in the pro-Trump mob were heard chanting that they wanted to "hang" Pence. Five people died due to the events of that day.
Trump doubled down on his blame of Pence in a statement last month, claiming that the former vice president's lack of "courage" — as well as "the weak and pathetic" former Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell — cost him the election.
"Had Mike Pence had the courage to send the Electoral College vote back to states for recertification, and had Mitch McConnell fought for us instead of being the weak and pathetic leader he is, we would right now have a Republican President who would be VETOING the horrific Socialistic Bills that are rapidly going through Congress," he said.