Former VP Mike Pence Testifies to Federal Grand Jury on Former Pres. Trump's Role in January 6

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

On Thursday, former Vice President Mike Pence appeared before a grand jury in a Washington, D.C., federal courtroom. His testimony was expected to be regarding a special counsel investigation into the role of former President Donald Trump in the January 6 Capitol riot. Special Counsel Jack Smith was tasked specifically with investigations into blocking the certification of the 2020 election results. Smith is also special counsel on the presidential records case that resulted in the infamous raid on Trump’s home at Mar-a-Lago in Florida.


The Department of Justice released a statement on Smith’s appointment in November:

Attorney General Merrick B. Garland announced today the appointment of former career Justice Department prosecutor and former chief prosecutor for the special court in The Hague, Jack Smith, to serve as Special Counsel to oversee two ongoing criminal investigations. The first is the investigation, as described in court filings in the District of Columbia, into whether any person or entity unlawfully interfered with the transfer of power following the 2020 presidential election or the certification of the Electoral College vote held on or about January 6, 2021. The second is the ongoing investigation involving classified documents and other presidential records, as well as the possible obstruction of that investigation, referenced and described in court filings submitted in a pending matter in the Southern District of Florida.

Pence has made public statements previously about Trump and January 6, both to the media and published in his memoir titled, “So Help Me God.” Pence, thus far, has offered only vague reflections to the public on his relationship with Trump, before, during, and after the election—and the contentious events of that day. He has characterized their personal dynamics as the two men having “differences that day.”

In December 2022, Pence told Fox News’ Shannon Beam:

The President and I clashed in the days leading up to January 6. I’ll always believe that I did my duty that day, by God’s grace, under the Constitution, and upheld the peaceful transfer of power. But I was angry. I was angry about our difference that day, and I was also angry at what I saw,


In March, Judge James Boasberg, the chief judge of U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia who is overseeing the grand jury probe, ordered that Pence comply with the subpoena for his testimony. That order remains under seal because it concerns a grand jury matter. Pence’s legal team had previously argued that, per his role as Vice President at the time, he had special immunity clauses regarding legislative processes. The order was reported to be a marginal victory for Pence, as Judge Boasberg ruled that the VP does have partial protection due to his constitutional role in the legislature, but would not be shielded from testifying about “illegalities” concerning Trump and January 6.

Trump also attempted to block the order, but on Wednesday Trump’s appeal was rejected by a federal appeals court.

Amid increased security at the courthouse, Pence arrived around 9 a.m. in a motorcade of black SUVs. The former VP used a garage entrance that prevents witnesses from being seen in public areas of the building as they headed to the grand jury rooms on the third floor.

Pence’s testimony comes at a time when a federal D.C. jury is deliberating on the fate of five Proud Boys in a January 6 seditious conspiracy trial. Juror deliberations began on Wednesday after closing arguments wrapped on Tuesday. In closing arguments, multiple defense lawyers put the blame on Trump for his words to the crowd on January 6.

Nayib Hassan, attorney for Enrique Tarrio, said his client was being used as a “scapegoat” telling jurors:


It was Donald Trump’s words. It was his motivation. It was his anger that caused what occurred on January 6th in your amazing and beautiful city,

Meanwhile, the former President held a rally on Thursday in New Hampshire, in his first campaign appearance since President Joe Biden launched his re-election attempt.

There are no details available on the contents of Pence’s testimony at this time. He reportedly left the federal courthouse around 4:30 p.m.

RedState will provide updates on this story as more details become available.


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