Mike Pence Tries To ‘Both Sides’ Jan. 6 Attack at Iowa Event

Republican presidential candidate former Vice President Mike Pence talks with moderator Tucker Carlson, left, during the Family Leadership Summit, Friday, July 14, 2023, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Former vice president and 2024 GOP presidential candidate Mike Pence was targeted by angry supporters of former President Donald Trump during the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol Building, but he now says he would not classify that event as an “insurrection.”

Pence made the statement at Friday’s Family Leadership Summit in Des Moines after being asked about it by former Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

“All I know for sure, having lived through it at the Capitol, is that it was a tragic day,” Pence said. “I never used the word ‘insurrection,’ Tucker, over the last two years. It was a riot that took place at the Capitol that day.”

During the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol, some rioters chanted “Hang Mike Pence.” Testimony shared last year during hearings held by the US House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack revealed that Pence’s security detail feared for their lives.

A witness testified that Pence’s Secret Service detail was “screaming” as they tried to get him out of the Capitol safely on Jan. 6 and so feared for their own lives that they radioed goodbyes to their family members.

Pence himself acknowledged the 150 Capitol police officers who were injured during the riot after being assaulted by Trump supporters, but called the death of Capitol rioter Ashli Babbitt at the hands of those officers a “tragic loss of life.” He clarified that second point after being pressed by Carlson.

“It was a tragic moment without question, but I have to tell you that seeing people assaulting law enforcement officers, smashing windows, breaking into the Capitol building, it infuriated me,” Pence said.

Pence said Capitol rioters should be punished, but followed up by making a false equivalency by attacking Black Lives Matters (BLM) protestors who took to the streets in summer 2020 to protest the murder of George Floyd, saying they should also be punished.

This disregards the fact that of more than 10,100 protests following Floyd’s murder, 95% were peaceful, according to an Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project study. Additionally, a USA Today report noted that 17,000 BLM protestors were arrested in 2020, most of which came for low-level offenses such as violating curfew. As of July, 1,069 people across the country have been charged in connection with the violent Jan. 6 attack, according to the US Department of Justice.

Pence closed out that line of questioning by attacking the bipartisan Jan. 6 committee and heaping praise on Carlson.

“The Jan. 6 committee was a partisan committee at the Congress of the United States, and it failed its historic mission of bringing the facts forward, and I know your commitment to bring all the facts to the American people, Tucker,” Pence said.

Carlson was implicated in the Fox News settlement over lies its host told related to the 2020 presidential election, which resulted in the network settling with Dominion Voting Systems for $787.5 million. Shortly after the settlement, Carlson was fired by Fox News, in part due to internal fears over his increasingly inflammatory views on race and violence.


by Ty Rushing

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