November 29, 2022

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Mike Pence says he did not leave his post with classified material

(Des Moines) Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said Friday that he was not taking classified information with him when he left office.

Published at 10:20 pm yesterday.

Thomas Beaumont
Associated Press

In an interview with The Associated Press in Iowa, Mr. Pence made the comment.

Asked directly if he retained any classified information after leaving office, Mike Pence replied, “No, I have no knowledge. »

The revelation — which would normally be trivial for a former vice president — was significant because FBI agents seized 11 sets of classified documents from his former employer’s property on Aug. 8 while investigating possible violations of three different federal laws. Donald Trump has said all the documents seized by authorities are “classified” and argued he would have turned them over if the Justice Department had asked.

Despite the item marked “top secret” on the government’s list of items recovered from Mar-a-Lago, Mr Pence said: “Honestly, I don’t want to make a judgment until I know all the facts. »

On Friday, Pence also addressed Republican Rep. Liz Cheney’s primary loss to a Trump-backed rival earlier this week. Mme Cheney, Trump’s most prominent Republican critic, has called the former president “the most serious threat and danger to our republic” and drew the latter’s ire for his role as vice chairman of the January 6 inquiry into the House of Representatives. 2021 Uprising on Capitol Hill.

“My reaction is that the people of Wyoming have spoken,” said Mr. Pence said he was targeted on Capitol Hill that day by angry rioters, some of whom chanted ‘Hang Mike Pence.’ And, you know, I agree with their decision on what kind of representation they want on Capitol Hill. »

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Mr Pence said he had the ‘greatest respect’ for Ms Fatherme Cheney, former Vice President Dick Cheney, President George W. He served two terms under Bush.

“I appreciate the conservative stance Congresswoman Cheney has taken over the years,” Pence continued. But I was disappointed from the start by the non-partisan aspect of the January 6 Commission. »

Pence doubts Trump investigation

Elaborating on the Mar-a-Lago investigation, the former vice president raised the possibility that the investigation, as it has in the past, was politically motivated. Conduct a search.

“The anxiety felt by millions of Americans can only be resolved in the light of day,” Mike Pence said Friday. I know this is unusual in an investigation. But this is an unprecedented move by the judiciary, and I believe it deserves unprecedented transparency. »

A few days earlier, speaking at a policy breakfast in New Hampshire, Mr. Pence urged fellow Republicans to stop attacking members of the FBI for the raid on Mar-a-Lago. At Wednesday’s event, he sought to defuse some of the growing threats against the FBI from ardent supporters of Donald Trump.

“The Republican Party is the party of law and order,” Pence said Wednesday, adding that the party always stands with law enforcement. These attacks on the FBI must stop, he said.

Mike Pence was part of a two-day trip Friday to Iowa, which is expected to host the first Republican presidential primary of 2024. Mr. Pence said Friday that he would make a decision early next year. His decision to run for the White House, his aides say, will be independent of what Donald Trump decides to do.

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After visiting the Iowa State Fair on Friday afternoon, Mr. Pence headlined a fundraiser the day before for Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley and was scheduled to address a conservative Christian group and another northern Iowa Republican fundraiser before leaving Saturday.