Following Trump’s arraignment on “conspiracy” charges last week, the 2024 GOP frontrunner’s former vice president, Mike Pence, said that the 2020 election results would have been turned over to the House of Representatives if he rejected the Electoral College votes.

“It wasn’t just to ask for a pause, the president specifically asked me and his gaggle of crackpot lawyers asked me to literally reject votes, which would have resulted in the issue being turned over to the House of Representatives, and literally chaos would have ensued,” said Pence.

“People can read the indictment and frankly, I’ve said before, I had hoped that it’d not come to this point. You know, I don’t know if the government can meet the standard, the burden of proof beyond reasonable doubt for criminal charges, but the American people deserve to know that President Trump and his advisors didn’t just asked me to pause, they asked me to reject votes, return votes, essentially to overturn the election.”

On Thursday, Trump was arraigned on charges of conspiracy to defraud the government, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of and attempt to obstruct an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights. He pleaded not guilty.

In the indictment from Special Counsel Jack Smith, he alleges that Trump enlisted six co-conspirators to “assist him in his criminal efforts to overturn the legitimate results of the 2020 presidential election and retain power.”

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The indictment alleges that Trump was “determined to remain in power” after the 2020 election, and for the two months following the election “the Defendant spread lies that there had been outcome-determinative fraud in the election and that he actually won.”

“After it became public on the afternoon of January 6 that the Vice President would not fraudulently alter the election results, a large and angry crowd—including many individuals whom the Defendant had deceived into believing the Vice President could and might change the election results—violently attacked the Capitol and halted the proceeding. As violence ensued, the Defendant and co-conspirators exploited the disruption by redoubling efforts to levy false claims of election fraud and convince Members of Congress to further delay the certification based on those claims,” the indictment stated.

Pence is currently running against his former administration partner for the GOP nomination, with Pence usually polling in the single digits While Trump leads anywhere from 40 to 60 points. 

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