Former Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday said that after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, former President Trump was "genuinely remorseful" and had asked about his family's well-being.
Pence told "Fox News Sunday" host Shannon Bream that he had a discussion with Trump five days after Jan. 6, during which the former president "lamented what had happened."
"I sensed he was deeply remorseful about what had happened," Pence said. "He immediately asked about Karen [Pence] and Charlotte [Pence Bond], who were with me all day and night on Jan. 6 and 7. … In that moment, he seemed genuinely remorseful."
Since leaving office, Pence has been a vocal critic of Trump. While he's being considered a potential 2024 challenger in the Republican primary, Pence has also been careful to court Trump supporters, some of whom stormed the Capitol on that day and chanted, "Hang Mike Pence" for his role in overseeing the Electoral College count of the 2020 president election.
Pence defied Trump's wishes that day by saying he did not have the authority to overturn the results, which Trump had allegedly been pressuring his allies inside the administration to do, according to the House panel investigating Jan. 6.
Pence, who hid underneath the Capitol that day, explained on Sunday that he was "angry" at Trump for sending out a tweet critical of him during the riot that some say fueled the chaos.
But when they talked privately days after the Jan. 6 riot, Pence said Trump appeared to regret how the events unfolded.
"He said, 'What if we hadn't had the rallies that are so terrible end like this?'" Pence recalled. "I told him I was praying for him. In the first meeting, he didn't respond."
"But when we were together a few days later … I reminded him again that I was praying for him," he added, explaining they had reached an understanding in that moment.
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