Mike Pence asked Defense Secretary to ‘clear the Capitol’: AP


  • The Associated Press obtained an internal Pentagon document on the Capitol riots on January 6.
  • According to the outlet, Vice President Mike Pence made an urgent call to the acting Secretary of Defense.
  • “Clear the Capitol,” Pence said after the mob had been in the building for hours.
  • See more stories on the Insider business page.

After a group of supporters of former President Donald Trump violated the United States Capitol on January 6, forcing lawmakers to evacuate and leaving several people dead, questions about the timing of events have remained.

Some of those details have emerged in an internal Defense Department document that was obtained by the Associated Press.

Vice President Mike Pence, who was in the building when the Capitol riots began, made an urgent call amid the chaos.

“Clear the Capitol,” Pence told Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, the Associated Press reported. Pence was in a “safe place” when he made the call, but the Capitol had already been invaded by rioters for two hours.

The Associated Press put together the siege timeline based on the previously known document and details.

Read more: Donald Trump faces legal risks on multiple fronts. Here are the lawyers in your corner.

According to the outlet, the timeline “exposes the inaction of then-President Donald Trump” and “shows that intelligence errors, tactical errors, and bureaucratic delays were overshadowed by the government’s inability to understand the scale and intensity of a violent uprising by his government. ” own citizens “.

Pence was on Capitol Hill on January 6 to oversee the electoral college vote count and certify President Joe Biden’s victory. Trump encouraged his supporters to go to Washington, DC, to “stop the robbery,” a reference to his unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud.

Before the siege, Trump addressed a crowd of his supporters and told them to march to the Capitol. He also lashed out at Pence for failing to block the electoral college recount, even though the vice president’s role was largely ceremonial.

Some of the rioters were caught on video chanting “Hang up Mike Pence.”

“Mike Pence did not have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our Constitution,” Trump tweeted as his supporters approached the Senate chamber, just minutes after Pence was evacuated around 2:13 a.m. pm.

An hour later, Trump tweeted again, urging his supporter, who had already invaded the building and attacked police officers, to “stay in peace.”

Pence’s call to Miller urging him to clear the Capitol came at 4:08 p.m., according to the Associated Press.

At 4:17 pm, Trump first urged his supporters to leave, tweeting a video of himself repeating false statements about the election and saying “go home and go home in peace.”

The Capitol was not declared safe until 8 pm, and law enforcement agencies were heavily criticized for their response to the day’s events.

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