Mike Pence Flips on Donald Trump: ‘I Can’t Defend It”
Former Vice President Mike Pence has been standing behind his former running mate and President Donald Trump, but the tide
Former Vice President Mike Pence has been standing behind his former running mate and President Donald Trump, but the tide is turning.
Trump was indicted on Tuesday, June 13, and formally charged with 37 felony counts – including 31 which stem from alleged violations of the Espionage Act.
It is reported that there are concerns around what information Trump may have leaked to bad actors while improperly storing the documents.
This week, Pence sat down with the Editorial Board for The Wall Street Journal.
And he no longer wants to stand up for the former POTUS.
Pence told the board, “Having read the indictment, these are very serious allegations. And I can’t defend what’s alleged.”
Pence later pointed out that he belongs to a military family, and has serious concerns about risks to the lives of American service members when sensitive information is put into the hands of the wrong people; “Even the inadvertent release of that kind of information could compromise our national security and the safety of our armed forces.”
View this post on Instagram
He added, “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.”
Pence did clarify that, “It’s hard for me to believe that politics didn’t play some role in this decision.”
The 2024 GOP nominee hopeful added that if he were to enter the White House after the next election, he would “clean house” at the DOJ.
Pence added: “But the President 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 newest comments are a definite change from even a week ago, when Pence spoke more favorably in defense of his former running mate.
At that time, Pence said, “I hope the DOJ thinks better of it and resolves these issues without an indictment.”
“I think it would also send a terrible message to the wider world,” he added, “I mean, we’re the emblem of democracy. We’re the symbol of justice in the world.”
Pence did insist that no one should be “above the law,” however.
And added that, “there would be a way for them to move forward without the dramatic and drastic and divisive step of indicting a former president of the United States”.
The tension between Trump and Pence is nothing new, but Pence has been trying to walk a delicate balance between wooing the fringe voters who circle around the MAGA universe – but don’t necessarily love the former President’s style – and trying to separate himself from his running mate’s legacy.
But it’s hard to overlook the fact that Trump supporters chanted “hang Mike Pence!” when they rioted at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 – so Pence may have been waiting for an opportunity to turn.
It could also signal a new phase for the early GOP candidate field – a phase where they are a little less polite, and a little less worried about stepping on Trump’s toes.
It could signal some more swings headed Trump’s way as the frontrunner finds himself bogged down by legal woes.