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Pence Testifies Before Grand Jury In Trump Election Conduct Case

Former Vice President Mike Pence testified on Thursday in front of a grand jury tasked with listening to evidence related to former President Donald Trump‘s conduct after the 2020 presidential election.

Although specific details are unknown, Pence was almost certainly asked about Trump and lawyer John Eastman‘s plot to stall Congress’ certification of the 2020 election results, using Pence’s position as the president of the Senate.

Pence declined to go along with their plan – claiming that a vice president does not have the power to single-handedly overturn a presidential election. Pence’s rejection of the plot has plagued his relationship with Trump – perhaps fatally.

Pence’s testimony was behind closed doors and lasted about five hours.

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Pence had attempted to flight his subpoena by arguing that the constitution’s “speech and debate” clause protects him from legal inquiry while performing his duties as the president of the Senate.

Trump’s lawyers have unsurprisingly also argued that the subpoena was illegal, claiming that his conversations with his vice president were protected by executive privilege.

Special Counsel Jack Smith was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland in November to investigate two cases related to Trump – one concerning classified White House documents being kept in his Florida Mar-a-Lago residence and the other concerning Trump’s alleged efforts to maintain power after losing the 2020 election to now-President Joe Biden. Pence’s testimony was a part of the latter.

A federal appeals court on Wednesday blocked a last-ditch effort by Trump’s legal team to stop Pence’s testimony.

Smith has already discovered evidence on other pieces of Trump’s plan to overturn the election, including his team’s plan to assemble alternate electors in swing states in order to propel Trump to the presidency.

Trump is facing another investigation regarding his conduct after the 2020 election in Georgia, which is being conducted by Atlanta District Attorney Fani Willis. Specifically, the investigation regards a phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger just days before the Capitol riot, in which Trump asks Raffensperger to “find the votes” that would cause him to win the state.

Jakob Mieszkowski-Lapping

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