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Pence advisor says if VP had obeyed Trump's demand to toss valid electoral votes it would have been the 'first constitutional crisis since the founding of the Republic'

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  • J. Michael Luttig says if the VP threw out electoral votes there would have been a "revolution."

  • Luttig said there would have been a "constitutional crisis in America" if Pence declared Trump winner in 2020.

  • His remarks confirm reports that Trump pressured Pence to stop the election certification process.

Former federal judge J. Michael Luttig told the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection that Pence overturning the 2020 election would've pushed the country into 'the first constitutional crisis since the founding of the republic.'

"That declaration of Donald Trump as the next president would have launched America into what I believe would have been tantamount to a revolution within a constitutional crisis in America which in my view would have been the first constitutional crisis since the founding of the Republic," he told lawmakers during a hearing Thursday.

"I would have laid my body across the road before I let the Vice President overturn the 2020 election on the basis of that historical precedent," he added.

In Luttig's prepared opening statement, he said that former president Donald Trump "instigated a war on democracy."

"Knowing full well that he had lost the 2020 presidential election, the former president and his allies and supporters falsely claimed and proclaimed to the nation that he had won the election, and then he and they set about to overturn the election that he and they knew the former president had lost," he said in his prepared remarks.

Luttig served as an informal adviser to Pence, who faced enormous pressure from Trump and his allies to stop Congress' election certification process. Pence declined to throw out electoral votes, stating that he does not have the "unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not."

Luttig has previously spoken out against Trump and other Republicans for their role in the January 6 insurrection. He told Politico that helping Pence in the days after the 2020 presidential elections was "the greatest honor of my life."

Luttig, a former appeals court judge, came close to being nominated for the Supreme Court during the George W. Bush administration. He also mentored Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, who has referred to Luttig as being "like a father to me." John Eastman, Trump's legal adviser, also clerked for Luttig.

 

Read the original article on Business Insider