CNN to Host Former Vice President Mike Pence in Iowa Town Hall as Presidential Ambitions Mount

AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki

On Thursday, CNN announced that it will host former Vice President Mike Pence in a town hall to take place in Iowa next month. The town hall will be moderated by CNN’s chief political correspondent Dana Bash. The event is scheduled to take place at Grand View University in Des Moines on Wednesday, June 7, at 9 pm ET.


Pence will answer questions from Bash and live audience members consisting of Iowa Republican voters who have pledged to participate in the critical early state caucuses. This format follows the other two presidential town halls hosted by CNN, featuring GOP candidates Nikki Haley, and the nomination front-runner, former President Donald Trump.

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

Pence has previously spoken publicly about his relationship with Trump and the events of January 6, both in media interviews and in his memoir. However, his reflections have been somewhat vague and limited. He has described personal dynamics with the former President as having “differences that day.”

In December, Pence stated:

In the days leading up to January 6, the President and I had clashes. I firmly believe that on that day, I fulfilled my duty, guided by God’s grace and the Constitution, to ensure a peaceful transfer of power. However, I felt anger. I was angry about the differences we had that day, and I was also angered by what I witnessed…

Trump’s performance at his CNN-hosted town hall was an impressive showing by the former President as he verbally jostled with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, sparking viral video clips from the event on the internet. To the audience’s delight, fed up with Collin’s interrupting and speaking over him, Trump described the moderator as a “nasty person.” Trump was particularly strong on the issue of the war in Ukraine, saying he doesn’t see it as a matter of winning or losing, but preserving lives, telling Collins:


I want everybody to stop dying. They’re dying, Russians and Ukrainians. I want them to stop dying.

Trump claimed that he would end the war within 24 hours of taking office.

Another highlight for many viewers was when the former President “pulled out the receipts” from his suit pocket, consisting of print-outs of his tweets surrounding the events of January 6. Trump plugged his platform Truth Social while highlighting his peaceful directives published to his previously suspended and globally popular Twitter account.

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Trump Dominates at Town Hall, Then Audience Focus Group Finishes CNN Off

Pence has flirted with but not announced a presidential candidacy. Earlier this month, the former VP indicated that he would make a decision by the end of June, saying:

I expect before the month of June is out, we’ll let people know of our decision. If we choose to go forward, this race doesn’t really start until the August debate in Milwaukee.

Pence was included in recent Iowa polling for probable GOP candidates, conducted from May 19-22 by Emerson College Polling. Pence received five percent of the vote, tying with Nikki Haley behind Florida Governor Ron DeSantis with 20 percent, and former President Trump with a 42-point lead at 62 percent.



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