Mike Pence spokesman refuses to answer whether he met with Russians

In the past days, Mike Pence has gone out of his way to make clear that Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with the Russian government to try to rig the election took place before he joined the Donald Trump ticket. It’s clear he wants nothing to do with this scandal. It’s also clear he’s worried it’ll gobble him up, as evidenced by his decision to hire a lawyer. And his spokesman may have just unwittingly given away why Pence seems so fearful.

Mike Pence sent his Press Secretary Marc Lotter onto Fox News to try to help insulate himself from the Russia scandal. But when host Bill Hemmer asked the seemingly easy question of whether Pence had ever met with the Russians himself, Lotter refused to say. Hemmer kept asking, but couldn’t get a “yes” or a “no” or even an “I don’t know” out of him. Instead he kept pivoting back to generic domestic talking points.

To be clear, this is not quite the same thing as Mike Pence admitting that he did meet with the Russians. But in light of the Donald Trump Jr. revelations, it’s a given that Pence discussed topics like this with his Press Secretary before sending him on air to represent him. And it’s also fairly clear that Pence told Lotter he wasn’t authorized to give a yes or no answer to that particular question, which is jarring.

Either Mike Pence met with representatives of the Russian government during the campaign or he didn’t. If the answer is no, it would have been easy for Pence to authorize his Press Secretary to go on television and say so. This suggests the story of Pence and Russia is far more complicated. Again, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the answer is yes. But it means that the story is complicated enough that Pence is afraid to let his team answer it with a no. So there will be another shoe to drop with Pence and Russia.

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9 Responses to Mike Pence spokesman refuses to answer whether he met with Russians

  1. Come on WaPo, New York Times, drop the dime on Mike Pence and Jeff Sessions….


  2. Donald Trump Jr.’s confession this week has blown the Russia scandal wide open. It’s bringing additional meetings and contacts to light. It’s prompting a review of existing evidence that now makes more sense in proper context. It’s causing questions to be asked that many in the Donald Trump campaign don’t have answers for. And according to respected Harvard Law Professor Laurence Tribe, Donald Trump and Mike Pence may both need to be impeached over it.

    Yesterday, Mike Pence’s press secretary appeared on Fox News and curiously refused to deny that Pence had also met with the Russian government, even after he was asked the question repeatedly. This led Palmer Report (link) and others, including MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, to send up red flags yesterday about whether this meant that Pence did meet with the Russians, and what role Pence may have played in trying to rig the election in Donald Trump’s favor. This morning, Laurence Tribe weighed in with his own verdict.

    Professor Tribe cited the Fox News incident and tweeted: “Pence is in up to his neck. Impeachment conversation may be premature, but whenever it occurs it may need to cover both POTUS & VPOTUS” (link). This is significant because Tribe is considered one of the foremost scholars on the U.S. Constitution. So when he says that Trump and Pence will both need to be looked at regarding impeachment, it carries significant weight. While the Republicans may refuse to impeach now, the Democrats will move forward with it if they take the majority in the midterm elections.

    This of course leads to the question of who would end up being President of the United States if Donald Trump and Mike Pence were both impeached and removed from office. It’s important to keep in mind that impeachment does not automatically mean removal. Paul Ryan is next in line, while Senate Pro Tem Orrin Hatch (not Mitch McConnell) is next after him. But as Palmer Report has previously laid out (link), it’s more likely that Trump and Pence would be impeached in succession, not simultaneously, to allow the appointment of an agreeable new VP in the interim who would then take office.


    • vitaminlover says:

      Granny Clampett is at it again!

    • majiir says:

      I doubt whether the Alabama State Bar will take any action against Sessions. Why?Because it’s beginning to look like Roy “Ten Commandments/Removed from the Alabama Supreme Ct. twice” Moore will win the special election for the open senate seat. That this will most likely happen tells me that few in Alabama care about ethics anymore.

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