On January 6th, 2021, a group of supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the United States Capitol Building, resulting in violence, destruction, and five deaths. This event, now known as the Capitol Riot, was a turning point in American history and has led to increased political tension and division. In recent news, former Vice President Mike Pence has taken a stance against Trump, causing the former president to lash out in response. In this article, we will examine the events leading up to the rift between Trump and Pence and the impact it may have on American politics.
The Constitutional role of the Vice President is to preside over the Senate, attending to ceremonial duties and breaking ties on important votes. Mike Pence held this position from 2017 to 2021, serving under President Donald Trump. Throughout their time together in office, the two men had a complicated and often tumultuous relationship.
On January 6th, the certification of the 2020 Presidential election was scheduled to take place in Congress. As Vice President, Pence’s role in this process was ceremonial, as he was tasked with reading the results submitted by each state. However, Trump had urged Pence to use his powers to overturn the election results, even though it would not be within his power to do so.
In the days leading up to January 6th, reports surfaced that Pence was not planning to intervene in the certification process. This angered Trump, who began to put additional pressure on Pence to change his stance. The relationship between the two men began to fracture, and when Pence released a statement affirming that he would not interfere in the certification process, Trump responded with a tweet criticizing his Vice President.
The Capitol Riot on January 6th disrupted the certification process, and many have accused Trump of inciting the violence that occurred. In the wake of the riot, Pence and Trump’s relationship continued to deteriorate. Pence was forced to flee the Senate chamber as rioters broke into the Capitol Building, threatening the safety of all within. Despite these events, Pence returned to Congress later that day and fulfilled his Constitutional duties, certifying Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory and formally ending the Trump presidency.
Since the Capitol Riot, tensions between Trump and Pence have remained high. Many members of Congress, including some Republicans, hold Trump responsible for the insurrection, which has prompted criticism towards Pence for his continued support of Trump. On June 17th, comments made by Pence during a speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library became the subject of scrutiny after he criticized Trump for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. He was also critical of Trump’s ongoing claims that the election was stolen from him, stating that his job as Vice President was to “protect and defend the Constitution, not just the person holding the office of the presidency.”
Trump responded to Pence’s statements in a statement of his own, saying that Pence was a “loose cannon” and that he had failed during the certification process to support him. Trump also said that it was up to Pence to stand up to other Republicans who were not supportive of him, saying that “if he had the courage to do that, he would be praised for eternity.”
The rift between Trump and Pence is significant not only for their personal relationship but for its broader implications for American politics. Trump’s influence within the Republican Party is waning, but his base of support remains strong. Meanwhile, Pence is rumored to be considering a run for president in 2024. If he decides to run, he will have to navigate the complex political landscape that Trump has left in his wake.
The political fallout from the Capitol Riot is ongoing, and many believe that the rift between Trump and Pence will only add to the tension. Some lawmakers have called for Pence to be held accountable for his role in the certification process, arguing that he should have done more to prevent the violence that occurred. Others have criticized Trump for his continued refusal to accept the results of the election, suggesting that he played a role in inciting the riot.
In conclusion, the relationship between Donald Trump and Mike Pence has been fraught with tension, especially in the wake of the Capitol Riot on January 6th. While their roles in the current political landscape are uncertain, it is clear that the fallout from the riot and the events that led up to it will continue to shape American politics for years to come. Only time will tell how the rift between these two men will impact the political future of the Republican Party and the United States as a whole.