Hours before President Donald Trump retweeted a message for his vice president to “act” in stopping the ratification of the Electoral College, he met for more than an hour in the Oval Office with Mike Pence, whom he has complained recently isn’t doing enough to support his bid to overturn the election.
The discussion was “entirely unrelated” to the eventual tweet, one person familiar with the matter said, though would not specify whether the issue of the January 6 ratification in Congress arose. The two men went separate ways for the holiday.
As Trump enters the holiday stretch as fixated as ever on overturning the results of the election, the Electoral College certification is becoming a focal point for his efforts.On Wednesday evening, as he was flying to Florida for his vacation, Trump retweeted a call from one of his supporters for Pence to refuse to ratify the Electoral College results on January 6 — a prospect that has captured his imagination even if it remains completely impossible.
Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani was with Trump aboard Air Force One before the President sent out the tweet. Giuliani is joining Trump at his Mar-a-Lago estate for the holidays, where the men are expected to discuss their election efforts….
Trump has told people recently that Pence isn’t doing enough to fight for him as his presidency ends, and has recently taken an interest in Pence’s traditional role during the certification. As President of the Senate, Pence presides over the proceedings.
Sources say Trump in recent days has brought the matter up to the vice president and has been “confused” as to why Pence can’t overturn the results of the election on January 6.Pence and White House aides have tried to explain to him that his role is more of a formality and he cannot unilaterally reject the Electoral College votes.
Traditionally, the vice president presides over the electoral vote certification, though it’s not a requirement. In 1969, then-Vice President Hubert Humphrey didn’t preside over the process since he had just lost the presidential election to Richard Nixon. The president pro tempore of the Senate presided instead.
One source close to Pence said it is not seen as a good option for Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley — the current president pro tempore — to be there instead of Pence on January 6.