In an interview on Tuesday, former Vice President Mike Pence defended his decision to delay conceding the 2020 election, citing the ongoing lawsuits filed by the Trump campaign challenging the election results.
CNN host Kaitlan Collins questioned Pence about the timing of his public concession, which occurred after Congress certified the Electoral College results in January 2021.
Pence explained that he wanted to show respect for former President Trump’s efforts to contest the election and mentioned the numerous lawsuits, approximately 60 in total, that were still being processed in the courts.
“The reality is I wanted to respect the process. I wanted to make it clear that I was going to do my job, as the presiding officer, over the Congress, as my 47 predecessors had done, and as Vice President, serving as president of the Senate. I think we did our duty. By God’s grace, we did our duty that day,” he said.
In the 2020 Electoral College, Joe Biden secured a victory with 306 electoral votes compared to Donald Trump’s 232. This marked a significant shift as Democrats won key battleground states like Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
Amid Trump’s claims of election theft, his campaign filed lawsuits in these states and Nevada to challenge the results. However, these legal challenges were dismissed, and subsequent election audits affirmed Biden’s win in all contested states.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, who is currently running for president, initially remained loyal to Trump. However, tensions escalated when Trump demanded that Pence reject certain states’ electoral votes during Congress’ certification of the results. Pence explained that the Constitution did not grant him the authority to overturn votes and send them back to the states.
On January 7, 2021, after supporters of Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol, Congress eventually certified the election results. During the chaos, Pence was forced to be evacuated as some rioters expressed intentions to harm him for what they perceived as betrayal.
Trump later blamed Pence for Biden’s ascension to the White House and even defended the threats against Pence’s life, suggesting that people were angry at him for passing what he considered a fraudulent vote.
Pence, however, firmly asserted that Trump’s demands were incorrect and believed history would hold him accountable for his actions.
According to a recent Fox News poll, Trump maintains a commanding lead with 56% support, while Pence lags behind at 4%.