Mike Pence’s former chief of staff confirmed on Wednesday that he warned the Secret Service the night before the January 6th insurrection that Pence could be in danger at the Capitol building.
Marc Short testified to the House committe investigating the insurrection for more than eight hours behind closed doors in January. Portions of that testimony are expected to be played at Thursday morning’s hearing.
That hearing will focus on Donald Trump’s efforts to pressure Pence to refuse to count and certify the electoral count. It is the ceremonial role of the vice president to oversee the formal certification of the presidential election.
Short confirmed to CNN that he did speak with the Secret Service on the night of January 5th.
‘Thousands of people descending upon Washington with hopes of a different outcome – I think it was important they be alerted to that,’ he said of his conversation with security.
‘But I did not have any specific, you know, intelligence. I did not have any knowledge the capitol would be attacked the way it was,’ he told Wolf Blitzer on Wednesday evening.
Greg Jacob, who served as counsel to Pence, and retired U.S. Appeals Court Judge J. Michael Luttig, who was an informal adviser, are scheduled to testify in person at the third of an expected six public hearings the committee has planned.
Committee aides told CNN that Thursday’s hearing will focus on how Trump had driven the pressure campaign against Pence despite being told by lawyers in the White House counsel’s office that Pence did not have the authority to unilaterally subvert the election results.
Former Pence chief of staff Marc Short confirms he warned Secret Service on January 5th of a possible threat against Mike Pence
On January 6th then-Vice President Mike Pence was evacuated from the Senate as rioters rushed the Capitol building
ABC News published never-before-seen photo of Mike Pence and his family hiding in his Senate office on January 6th
Short would not, however, confirm what New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman reported in her forthcoming book – ‘Confidence Man: The Making of Donald Trump and the Breaking of America’ – that Short expected Trump to turn publicly against Pence, creating a possible risk to the vice president.
He told CNN he thought Trump was ill served with advice after the election.
‘I think ultimately the buck stops with the president. I also think there’s people around the president I think served him very poorly and I think gave poor advice,’ he said.
Short also said he wasn’t convinced of the committee’s finding that Trump agreed with the MAGA supporters who were shouting for Pence to be hanged.
During Thursday evening’s hearing, Republican Rep. Liz Cheney, who serves on the panel investigating the insurrection, said of Trump: ‘Aware of the rioters’ chants to ‘hang Mike Pence,’ the president responded with this sentiment: ‘Maybe our supporters have the right idea.’ Mike Pence ‘deserves’ it.’
There were gasps in the hearing room at her words.
‘I NEVER said, or even thought of saying, “Hang Mike Pence.” This is either a made up story by somebody looking to become a star, or FAKE NEWS!,’ Trump wrote in response the next day on Truth Social.
Short said he wasn’t convinced that Trump wanted Pence hanged.
‘I’m not even yet convinced of that. I know what the committee said. I also know the president denied that,’ he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.
He also said that Pence wasn’t watching the hearings but was looking at news reports on them.
Meanwhile, new photos published by ABC News show Pence and his family hiding in the Capitol building after rioters broke in and Pence was hussled off the Senate floor.
In one picture, Pence can be seen with members of his family – second lady Karen Pence, his brother, Rep. Greg Pence and his daughter – in the vice president’s ceremonial office just steps from the Senate floor.
The photo shows Karen Pence hurriedly closing the curtains in the room. A source told ABC that Karen Pence could see rioters outside the Capitol, so she closed the curtains so they wouldn’t see the Pence family.
Later Pence and his family would be rushed out of the office and taken to another location in the Capitol complex when the rioters breached the Senate floor.
Mike Pence, in a ceremonial role fulfilled by the vice president, oversaw the formal certification of the electoral college results
In the days leading up to the January 6th certification, Trump delivered a string of tweets demanding that Pence use his position to prevent Congress certifying his election defeat to Joe Biden.
Pence had already told the president he had no such power.
Short told CNN that Pence was doing his constitutional duty when he oversaw thee certification of the election.
‘He did his duty. He swore an oath to uphold the constitution. He swore an oath to god to uphold the constitution just as our men and women in uniform do,’ he said.