Pence on ruling that he must testify in Jan. 6 probe: ‘I have nothing to hide’
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Former Vice President Pence said he has “nothing to hide” after a federal judge reportedly ruled that he must testify in front of the federal grand jury investigating former President Trump’s actions on the day of the Jan. 6 insurrection.
“Let me be clear, I have nothing to hide,” Pence said in an interview with Newsmax on Tuesday. “I have a Constitution to uphold. I upheld the Constitution on Jan. 6.”
Pence has previously fought back a subpoena from special counsel Jack Smith, who is handling two separate federal investigations into Trump, by arguing that the Constitution’s “speech and debate” clause shielded him from having to testify about his officials duties on Jan. 6. Trump had fought to block Pence’s speaking with the grand jury on the grounds of executive privilege.
A judge ruled that executive privilege could not shield Pence entirely from having to testify, according to a number of reports. The court did however agree in part that Pence would not have to answer questions about his role as president of the Senate, possibly limiting questions into his actions on the day of the Capitol riots.
But Pence will have to answer questions that address any criminality by Trump, the judge reportedly ruled, striking a blow to the former president’s attempt to keep his former vice president from speaking to investigators about him.
“I’m pleased that the court accepted our argument and recognized that the Constitution’s provision about speech and debate does apply to the vice president,” Pence said. “The way they sorted that out and the requirements of my testimony going forward are subject of our review right now.”
When asked if he planned to appeal the ruling, Pence said “we are evaluating the court’s decision.”
The potential testimony from Pence comes as Smith’s investigation into the former president shows signs of picking up steam. The special counsel has started to approach a number of other high profile witnesses connected to Trump, including his daughter Ivanka Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner and former chief of staff Mark Meadows.