Former Vice President Mike Pence‘s team didn’t start packing up his documents until after January 6, due to then President Donald Trump‘s insistence that everyone in the administration act like they were staying for a second term.
CBS News reported Thursday on why the ex-vice president’s aides got a late start in moving him out of his office after he and Trump lost the 2020 election to President Joe Biden.
Trump had refused to concede the election to Biden and lied about there being widespread fraud in an attempt to stay in office.
However, the election was certified for Biden in the early hours of January 7, 2021, after Pence refused to cooperate in a fraudulent attempt to choose fake slates of Trump electors over legitimate ones for Biden in swing states – with the votes delayed due to the MAGA attack on the Capitol.
Former Vice President Mike Pence’s team didn’t start packing up his documents until after January 6, due to then President Donald Trump’s insistence that everyone in the administration act like they were staying for a second term, CBS News reported Thursday
Pence’s packing commenced after that.
Pence gave Biden some political cover this week with the announcement that classified documents were found at his Indiana home.
On Wednesday, CNN reported that the documents were background briefings ahead of foreign trips.
The documents – around 12 – were found on January 16, and on January 18 Pence’s aides alerted the National Archives.
Sources now tell CNN that the documents were of a lesser classification than the top-secret papers found at Biden‘s Delaware home and Washington, D.C. office and the more than 300 files found at Trump‘s Mar-a-Lago resort.
It is not unusual for senior government officials to have classified documents in their homes, as they are required for late-night research and reference, but they should be turned over to the National Archives once the official leaves office.
Biden and Pence followed procedure by immediately informing the authorities as soon as the documents were found.
Classified documents were found at Pence’s $1.9 million Carmel, Indiana home earlier this month, with the former vice president promptly informing the National Archives and turning them over to the FBI
Pence’s team didn’t start packing up his office until after January 6, due to Trump wanting it to look like the administration was staying for a second term. The vice president’s main office is located in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building (pictured) next to the White House
Trump, on the other hand, dragged his heels for 15 months, driving the FBI to ultimately raid his Florida home to seize the documents and confiscate them.
Earlier on Wednesday, a top Democrat applauded Biden and Pence’s handling of the matter – while admitting he was ‘frustrated’ they had removed the documents in the first place.
‘I’m frustrated if anyone doesn’t handle confidential secret documents in the manner in which they’re supposed to,’ said Rep. Pete Aguilar, the chairman of the Democratic Caucus, at a news conference on Wednesday.
‘It’s clear some protocols weren’t followed.’
Aguilar, a California Democrat, reflected a growing sentiment on Capitol Hill: lawmakers feel their rules for viewing sensitive material are treated with more care than those across town at the White House complex.
‘I go to the security facility and read documents often. There’s a process by which we are allowed to do that,’ Aguilar said.
Aguilar said Biden and Pence handled finding documents ‘the way they should – letting everyone know and talking to the Archives and law enforcement agencies about what was found.’
‘It’s clear that the former president didn’t handle this appropriately,’ Aguilar said, referring to Trump.
‘[He] obstructed every possible avenue in which authorities could leave that material and lied about the material possessions. So you view them differently. But I think altogether, it’s a disappointment,’ the caucus chair added.
Former President Donald Trump told Pence not to pack up until after January 6, 2021 according to CBS News
Vice President Pence was inside the Capitol when the Trump supporters stormed Congress on January 6, 2021.
“A small number of documents,” taken into FBI custody on January 19, “were inadvertently boxed and transported” to the former vice president’s home at the end of the last administration, Pence’s lawyer, Greg Jacob, wrote in a letter to the National Archives shared with The Associated Press.
Four boxes containing copies of administration papers – two in which ‘a small number’ of papers bearing classified markings were found, and two containing ‘courtesy copies of vice presidential papers’ – were discovered, according to the letter.
Arrangements were made to deliver those boxes to the National Archives on January 23.
James Comer, a Republican from Kentucky and chair of the House Oversight Committee, said Pence reached out to offer his cooperation with the congressional panel.
‘Former Vice President Pence’s transparency stands in stark contrast to Biden White House staff who continue to withhold information from Congress and the American people,’ Comer said in a statement.
Republican Caucus Chair Elise Stefanik of New York also drew a stark contrast between Pence’s and Biden’s handling of classified documents.
‘[Pence] came forward and proactively reached out and is following the process,’ she said.
‘In the case of Joe Biden, he has had classified documents going back to his time in the Senate where he started serving before I was born,’ she said.
‘So, this is a longstanding national security threat, setting aside the fact that Hunter Biden also had access and used as his home address where those documents were improperly and illegally stored,’ Stefanik added.