Former Vice President Mike Pence shrugged off the anger of Trump supporters who are upset he did not attempt to challenge the results of the 2020 election while presiding over Congress in January as lawmakers tallied the electoral votes in President Joe Biden's victory despite pressure by his boss at the time.

After admitting months ago he may never see "eye to eye" with former President Donald Trump regarding the events of Jan. 6, Pence expanded that explanation to address his break with the "MAGA" faithful even as he called them "our" supporters. This happened during a new interview in which Pence left the door wide open to a presidential run in 2024 which could very well pit him against Trump or another Trump-endorsed candidate should Trump decide not to run.

He was asked by CBN News journalist David Brody to respond to those who call him "traitor." Brody noted that these complaints are so consistent that he hears them every day.

"On Jan. 6, I said that I believe there were irregularities about which I was concerned, and I wanted them to have a fair hearing before the Congress," Pence said. "But from the founding of this nation forward, it's been well established that elections are to be governed at the state level and that the only role that Congress has is to open and count the electoral votes that are submitted by states across the country — no more, no less than that."


Referring back to the 2017 inauguration, Pence said he took an oath to "support and defend" the Constitution.

"The Bible says in Psalm 15 that he 'keeps his oath even when it hurts,' and on that day, I could relate to that sentiment. But I wanted to keep my oath to the Constitution," he said. "I know in my heart of hearts that on that day, we did our duty, under the Constitution. ... I don't know if President Trump and I will ever see eye to eye on that day or that many of our most ardent supporters will agree with my decision that day. But I know I did the right thing."

Despite immense pressure from allies, Pence sent a letter to Congress saying that he did not have the power to reject Electoral College votes, dealing a blow to Trump’s hopes to deny a presidential victory to Biden as he insisted the contest was fraught with fraud and irregularities. Election officials on the federal and state level, including in Trump's own government, have said they found no evidence of widespread fraud to support his claims of a stolen election.

Donald Trump
Former Vice President Mike Pence and former President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Trump insisted to Fox News that he and Pence maintain a "good relationship," even after the 45th president criticized his former No. 2 for lacking the "courage" to try and stop lawmakers from certifying the Electoral College vote in favor of now-President Biden, a process disrupted by rioters who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. The siege of Congress is now under investigation by a House select committee, which has subpoenaed several of Trump's closest advisers.

Although some of the rioters were threatening Trump's vice president, chanting "hang Mike Pence" at the Capitol, Pence has downplayed the events of the riot as "one day in January" and critiqued the media's focus on it as being a way to distract from the Biden administration's "failed agenda."

Pence, who started a political nonprofit organization after leaving the West Wing in January and recently began hosting a podcast, has signaled that he will make his 2024 decision irrespective of his former boss and may choose to challenge him in the Republican primary with a travel schedule this year that includes early voting states including Iowa and New Hampshire.


He said during the interview that he is putting his time into supporting conservatives in the midterm elections next year, but did not dismiss the notion that he could run for office again in the future.

"For right now, my focus is entirely on doing everything in my power to support the conservative cause and win back the Congress and statehouses all across this country in 2022. We'll let the future take care of itself after that, and I promise to keep you posted. ... And then in the years ahead, I'm confident that our party and our movement will choose the right leaders and the right voices to make our country strong and great once again," Pence said.