As Trump and former VP part ways, Pence eyes POTUS.
- President Donald Trump is effectively ruling out asking former Vice President Mike Pence to be his running mate should he run for a third White House bid in 2024 and win the Republican nomination, The Washington Examiner reports.
- “I don’t think the people would accept it,” Trump told The Examiner Tuesday evening during a telephone interview from Mar-a-Lago, his private club and political headquarters in Palm Beach, Florida.
- Trump pointed to disagreement between himself and Pence rising in the aftermath of the 2020 election, suggesting their differences are too stark to overcome, The Examiner notes.
- Trump claims the election was stolen and wanted Pence to overturn the results during the congressional certification of Joe Biden’s Electoral College win.
- But Trump did characterize Pence as a “really fine person,” even though he signaled their relationship might be irrevocably broken.
- “Mike and I had a great relationship except for the very important factor that took place at the end. We had a very good relationship,” Trump said. “I haven’t spoken to him in a long time.”
PENCE FOR PRESIDENT?:
- Pence is considering a 2024 bid, The Examiner reports.
- He’s also signaled he wouldn’t automatically stand aside if Trump were to run, accelerating efforts to establish his independence from President Trump.
- Pence recently told a gathering of conservative lawyers Trump is flat “wrong” to claim the vice president is constitutionally empowered to throw out the results of a presidential election.
- He also took aim at Trump’s remarks toward Russian President Vladimir Putin during remarks to party financiers gathered for a Republican National Committee donor retreat, saying, “There is no room in this party for apologists for Putin.” Trump had previously referred to Putin as “smart,” “savvy,” and “a genius” in certain contexts, while insisting that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine never would have happened on his watch.
- “We cannot win by fighting yesterday’s battles or by relitigating the past,” said Pence.
- Trump was recently the overwhelming favorite for the GOP nomination in the 2024 presidential election, garnering 59% of the vote in a straw poll conducted at a Conservative Political Action Conference‘s meeting in Orlando, Florida, even beating Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by 31 points.
- Pence was among the 1 percenters, along with Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Tim Scott of South Carolina and Ted Cruz of Texas, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, and Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin.
- Pence argues the Constitution granted him no authority to overturn the Electoral College results.
- “Mike thought he was going to be a human conveyor belt, that no matter how fraudulent the votes, you have to send them up to the Old Crow,” Trump said, using his nickname for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, The Examiner notes.
- “But that turned out to be wrong. Because now, as you know, they are feverishly working to try and get it so that the vice president cannot do what Mike said he couldn’t do,” Trump said, referring to proposals to overhaul the Electoral Count Act. “Obviously, they were either lying, misrepresenting, or they didn’t know.”
- “I was disappointed in Mike,” Trump said.