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Mike Pence Says That He Won’t Endorse Donald Trump’s 2024 Presidential Bid

Former Vice President Mike Pence said that he will not endorse Donald Trump’s 2024 presidential bid.

“It should come as no surprise that I will not be endorsing Donald Trump this year,” Pence told Fox News’ Martha MacCallum earlier today.

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“As I have watched his candidacy unfold, I have seen him walking away from our commitment to confront the national debt. I’ve seen him start to shy away from a commitment to the sanctity of human life. And this last week his reversal on getting tough on China and supporting our administration’s effort to force a sale of ByteDance TikTok.”

He added, “Donald Trump is pursuing and articulating an agenda that is at odds with the conservative agenda that we governed on during our four years. That is why I cannot in good conscience endorse Donald Trump in this campaign.”

Trump’s administration initiated an effort to force ByteDance to divest TikTok, but it was blocked in the courts. The House overwhelmingly passed a bill this week that would force TikTok’s China-owned parent to sell the app, or face a ban on app stories and hosting services.

Pence has previously criticized Trump’s conduct during the events January 6, 2021, when a mob stormed the Capitol. Pence was presiding over the electoral vote count that day, but had resisted Trump’s pressure to block the certification of the election in favor of Joe Biden.

In remarks last year, Pence said that he was “not afraid but I was angry. President Trump was wrong. I had no right to overturn the election. And his reckless words endangered my family and everyone at the Capitol that day. And I know that history will hold Donald Trump accountable” for what happened.

He also said that “January 6 was a tragic day…I was there at the Capitol, and let me assure you it was not, as some would have us believe, a matter of tourists peacefully enjoying our Capitol.”

He added, “Tourists don’t injure 140 police officers by sightseeing. Tourists don’t break down doors to get to the Speaker of the House. Or voice threats against public officials. The American people have a right to know what took place at the Capitol on January 6. I expect members of Fourth Estate to continue to do their job. Make no mistake about it — what happened that day was a disgrace and it mocks decency to portray it in any other way.”

Pence’s refusal to endorse Trump, though, is a bit of a surprise. During the first Republican presidential debate in August, Pence was among the candidates who raised their hands when asked if they would support Trump even if convicted. Pence dropped out of the race in October.

Pence’s non-endorsement follows a series of congressional lawmakers who have announced their support for Trump’s return to the White House. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) endorsed him last week, even though he had previously condemned Trump’s conduct on January 6th. Trump had also made racist remarks about McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, who served as transportation secretary during the administration.

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