Former Vice President Mike Pence said there was «no pressure involved» to overturn Donald Trump’s presidential election results when he called Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey in 2020 at the then-president’s behest.
“I reached out, not just to Governor Ducey, but to other governors and states that were going through the legal process of reviewing their election results, but there was no pressure,” Pence, who is now running for president against Trump, said during a interview with “Face the Nation” on CBS which aired on Sunday.
Pence’s comments came in response to a report by The Washington Post on Saturday, which said Trump «tried to pressure» Ducey to overturn the results of the state’s presidential election in a phone call in late 2020, according to the newspaper. Pence also repeatedly called Ducey on behalf of the president, but «did not follow Trump’s instructions to pressure the governor.»
Ducey did not immediately respond to NBC News’ request for comment.
On CBS Sunday, Pence said at the time he was just «calling to get an update» and passed information to Trump confirming the election results.
“Look, these states were going through a process after so much uncertainty about the outcome of the elections in places like Arizona, in places like Georgia. States across the country were going through the legal process of participating in a review under state law,” she said. “I got updates on it, I passed it on, and it was no more, no less than that.”
«I don’t remember any pressure,» he added.
Trump had fallen out with Ducey, a Republican who was a close ally of his during the 2020 election, when the Arizona governor signed the state’s voter certification of Biden’s victory. Trump at the time tweeted that Ducey had «betrayed» the people of Arizona by not endorsing the president’s false claim that he had actually won the state he actually lost by more than 10,000 votes.
In video footage de Ducey in certifying the results of the state’s November 2020 election, the governor silenced a phone call that played to the tune of «Hail to the Chief,» a ringtone he said he used specifically to incoming calls from the White House.
In the days leading up to the January 6, 2021 joint session of Congress to certify the election results, Trump lobbied Pence to annul Biden’s victory while presiding over the results certification ceremony. Pence rejected Trump’s demand and became the target of some of the rioters who stormed the Capitol that day chanting «Hang Mike Pence.»
Pence has increased his criticism of his former boss since he launched his presidential bid in early June, accusing Trump of abandoning conservatism and his constitutional duties.