BY Jim Baker, The Western JournalJune 16, 2023
1 year ago
 | June 16, 2023
1 year ago

Pence Throws Trump Under Bus - 'I Can't Defend What Is Alleged,' He Crows

Former Vice President Mike Pence has undergone a shift in his perspective on the indictment of former President Donald Trump, under whom he served in the White House.

Last week, Pence -- who is running for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination against Trump and several other candidates -- said he opposed the idea of bringing federal charges against his former boss, saying it "would be terribly divisive to the country."

“I think it would also send a terrible message to the wider world," he said during a CNN town hall in Des Moines, Iowa, on June 7.

"I mean, we’re the emblem of democracy. We’re the symbol of justice in the world," the former vice president said. "And the serious matter, which has already happened once in New York, of indicting a former president of the United States sends a terrible message to the world.

"I hope the DOJ thinks better of it and resolves these issues without an indictment."

That didn't happen. The next day, Trump was hit with a 37-count federal indictment charging him with willful retention of national defense information, conspiracy to obstruct justice and other crimes.

After reading the 49-page indictment, unsealed Friday, Pence said he could not defend Trump's alleged actions.

“Having read the indictment, these are very serious allegations," the former vice president said in an interview Tuesday with The Wall Street Journal's editorial board. "And I can’t defend what is alleged.”

He expressed concern that the former president’s alleged mishandling of classified data could put the lives of American service members in jeopardy.

“The suggestion that there were documents pertaining to the defense capabilities of the United States and our allies, our nuclear program, to potential vulnerabilities of the United States and our allies," Pence said.

"Even the inadvertent release of that kind of information could compromise our national security and the safety of our armed forces," he said. "And, frankly, having two members of our immediate family serving in the armed forces of the United States, I will never diminish the importance of protecting our nation’s secrets.”

However, he noted that Trump "is entitled to his day in court, he’s entitled to bring a defense, and I want to reserve judgment until he has the opportunity to respond."

The former vice president made similar comments Wednesday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” saying, "This indictment contains serious charges, and I cannot defend what is alleged."

The comments are interesting in light of the fact that about a dozen classified documents were found at Pence's Indiana home in January.

He recently learned that he would not be facing any charges related to that discovery.

“The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department’s National Security Division have conducted an investigation into the potential mishandling of classified information,” the Department of Justice said in a letter to Pence’s attorney, according to a CNN report June 2. “Based on the results of that investigation, no criminal charges will be sought.”

As Mike Pence's views on the Trump indictment have undergone a significant transformation, questions naturally arise regarding the motives behind his shift.

Political ambitions and the desire to distinguish oneself within the party are common drivers for such shifts in the political landscape.

Others have questioned Pence's loyalty to Trump since he didn't take up his former boss' call to block the certification of the 2020 election results on Jan. 6, 2021.

Ultimately, as Trump's criminal case continues to unfold, the role of Mike Pence in this evolving narrative will undoubtedly be a subject of intense speculation and analysis.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Jim Baker, The Western Journal



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