A Democrat congressman has argued that Donald Trump has admitted to planning to overturn the results of the 2020 election along with Mike Pence, his vice president.
Jamie Raskin told CBS News on Tuesday that a statement issued by the former US president on Sunday was proof that he had “said the criminal part out loud” about his intentions to remain in power.
Mr Trump said in the statement that Mr Pence “did have the right to change the outcome” of the election when Congress met on 6 January, and “unfortunately, he didn’t exercise that power”.
“He could have overturned the Election,” Mr Trump added.
The remarks were among the most open admissions to date by Mr Trump that his inner circle had thought about overturning the 2020 election.
Mr Pence, whose role on 6 January was largely ceremonial, could have theoretically not certified the results of the election during a joint session of Congress that was disrupted by pro-Trump rioters.
Reports suggest Mr Trump asked his vice president more than once to consider throwing out the election results, and as veteran author Bob Woodward revealed in his book Peril, the former president told Mr Pence that he did not want to be friends anymore because he would not follow his plan.
Hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building to disrupt the proceedings of the election certification – mainly with an aim to overturn Democrat election victories in the House, Senate and presidency.
Mr Raskin, a member of the House committee investigating what went on before and after 6 January, continued by saying that the panel has now spoken with former aides of Mr Pence, and is expecting to speak to Mr Trump’s eldest daughter, Ivanka.
That however remains unconfirmed and she has rejected being associated with the riot on 6 January 2021.
Mr Trump’s remarks on Saturday hit out at plans for ammendments to the 1887 Electoral Count Act that would prevent a future vice president from trying to reject the election results.