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    NewsUSAThe special prosecutor investigating Trump summons his vice president, Mike Pence, to testify

    The special prosecutor investigating Trump summons his vice president, Mike Pence, to testify

    The then Vice President Mike Pence was a front-row witness of the assault on the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and the attempts of his boss, Donald Trump, to subvert the electoral result of the 2020 elections, in which he had been defeated by Joe Biden. The Department of Justice has been interested for months in having Pence’s testimony about what happened then. Now, the special prosecutor who centralizes the investigations into Trump’s possible crimes, Jack Smith, has taken the step of calling him to testify.

    Pence refused to follow Trump’s request to stop the certification of Biden’s victory in Congress on January 6. That refusal to subvert the election result earned him the ire of Donald Trump and his supporters. The mob chanted “let’s hang Mike Pence” as they forced their way towards the Capitol.

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    Pence’s subpoena was revealed by the ABC television network and later confirmed by numerous US media, although it is not public nor has it been confirmed by Pence or the Department of Justice. ABC News notes that the subpoena has come after months of contacts and negotiations between investigators working with Smith and the former vice president’s legal team. Smith initially wanted to obtain a voluntary statement from Pence, but has ultimately had to resort to a subpoena.

    It is the prosecutor who has to take the step of filing charges if he considers that the evidence of crime is solid. In addition to all the documentation and testimony collected by the commission itself and by the work of investigators, Pence’s testimony could prove decisive.

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    Pence, who has since stayed away from Trump, is considering running his own 2024 presidential bid, something Trump has already done. The former vice president, however, is not very popular among the Republican base, which decides the candidate in the primaries.

    Mike Pence was never formally summoned to testify in the House of Representatives committee that investigated the assault on the Capitol, although he always rejected the idea of ​​appearing before it. At the time, he pointed out that the separation of powers would allow him to avoid that testimony in application of the so-called executive privilege.

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    Unlike the testimony in Congress, the allegation of executive privilege has not prevented other government officials from having to testify in the criminal investigation. Pence, however, can try to invoke it, which would open a legal battle that would delay and hinder the investigation.

    Special counsel Jack Smith is leading both investigations. It is not clear if the Pence subpoena, the most significant move by Smith since his appointment, also encompasses both cases.


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