Jan. 6 committee will ask Mike Pence to answer questions: Chair says

The congressional committee investigating the Capitol attack will ask former US Vice President Mike Pence to answer its questions, according to the panel’s chairman.

“I think you could expect that before the month’s out,” Rep. Bennie Thompson, Chair of the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol, told NPR.

Democrats have been arguing that the riot on Jan. 6 was an insurrection based on disinformation spread by former President Donald Trump, who alleges that he is the true victor of the 2020 presidential election and not Joe Biden.

Pence played a major role in the drama of that day. As the date approached, Trump pressured Pence, who oversaw the final vote, to go beyond his ceremonial role and block the certification, thereby throwing the election to Trump. Pence refused.

“The vice president was put in a tough spot,” Thompson explained to the radio station. “The president was putting a lot of pressure on him to break the law, and he stood fast.”

Furious that the certification was moving ahead, thousands of Trump’s supporters attacked police, vandalized the Capitol and sent members of Congress and Pence running for their lives on that day.

Secret Service members rushed the former VP to safety before the mob could reach him.

“We’d like to know what his security detail told him was going on,” Thompson said. “Our committee really needs to hear what are his opinions about what happened on January 6.”

The committee has not yet asked Pence to testify, and no subpoena has been issued. Thompson said that if the investigators did make the request, they would begin by asking Pence to speak voluntarily.

“I would hope that he would do the right thing and come forward and voluntarily talk to the committee,” Thompson said in a separate interview with CNN. “We have not formally asked. But if he offered, we’d gladly accept. Everything is under consideration.”

This comes as the Democratic representative said last week that the committee was studying whether it could issue subpoenas to Republican members of Congress to force their cooperation.

He said on NBC’s “Meet The Press” Sunday that the committee was seeking to lawfully issue subpoenas to sitting members of Congress.

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