Former Vice President Mike Pence stalled on Friday when he was asked if he would classify the events of Jan. 6, 2021, as an “insurrection.”
The awkward moment came during the Family Leadership Summit in Des Moines, Iowa, where Republican presidential candidates were grilled by moderator Tucker Carlson about their positions on the issues that are important to voters.
The former Fox News host’s command of the room was palpable, and he took no prisoners from those who are seeking to carry the GOP mantle into the future.
Carlson then interrogated Pence about the Capitol incursion.
The former VP has run a campaign in which he has distanced himself from former President Donald Trump on CNN while repeating vague platitudes and portraying himself as the ultimate statesman.
It has yet to resonate with potential voters, according to polling.
On Friday, Carlson gave Pence the chance to address the events of the day that turned Trump — and many of his supporters — against him.
“I have to ask you,” Carlson said, “since you were a witness to and in some unintentional way a participant in one of the most widely covered events in American history, Jan. 6: What was that? Do you think that was an insurrection?”
Pence sighed before stopping to thank the organizers of the event.
“Can I just take a moment just to say thank you?” he asked. He also mentioned pro-life protections soon to be signed into law by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds.
Eventually, Pence got around to answering Carlson’s very direct question.