WASHINGTON – Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., Stood by his account of former President Donald Trump’s phone call to him during Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol despite Trump’s lawyers calling the account “hearsay.”.
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Tuberville’s account would mean Trump was aware of the danger Vice President Mike Pence faced before he tweeted an attack on Pence. Asked about the allegation by reporters, Tuberville said he was not sure exactly what time Trump called, but reiterated he had talked to Trump by phone on Jan. 6 and had told the president Pence was evacuated from the Senate chamber.
Tuberville recounted answering the phone, talking briefly to Trump, and then telling him, “Mr. President, they’ve taken the vice president out. They want me to get off the phone, I gotta go.”.
“So, probably the only guy in the world who hung up on the President of the United States,” Tuberville said, though he said he did not know whether Trump was aware of the situation Pence was in before the phone conversation.
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The call between Tuberville and Trump might shed new light on the events of the Jan. 6 riot and became a point of contention during the impeachment trial.
Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., Asked Trump’s lawyers for greater clarity on the call but said Trump’s lawyers had “not really” answered his question.
Trump’s attorney Michael van der Veen had responded to Cassidy’s question by saying he disputed the “premise” of Cassidy’s question and called Tuberville’s account “hearsay.”.
“Obviously it wasn’t hearsay. Tuberville was right there,” Cassidy told reporters.
Sens. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, and Susan Collins, R-Maine, had asked Trump’s lawyers whether Trump knew that Pence had been evacuated from the Senate when he sent a disparaging tweet about Pence. Trump’s team said he was not informed at any point that Pence was in danger.
As rioters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, Trump’s tweet at 2:24 p.M. Said, “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving states a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify.”.
Video presented by the House impeachment managers showed Pence evacuated from the Senate around 2:13 p.M. On Jan. 6.
Tuberville told reporters “as a juror” he would not say how he felt about the final impeachment vote on conviction that could come as early as Saturday afternoon, but has denounced the impeachment process as a “partisan circus.”.
Contributing: Jeanine Santucci.
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