New documentary footage shows Pence’s reaction to the night House pressured him to invoke the 25th Amendment
In a clip from filmmaker Alex Holder’s documentary made available to CNN, Pence responds to an email shown to him by one of his associates. The documentary says the then-vice president was shown a draft House resolution calling for Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from power.
However, a Pence spokesman said the characterization was wrong. “In the documentary, Vice President Pence responded to an acknowledgment that his letter was sent to Speaker Pelosi, dismissing her ruse of invoking the 25th Amendment,” the Pence spokesman said.
News of the letter was reported not long after.
Holder told CNN’s Don Lemon about the email Pence received in an interview Thursday, “I could see what it was on the phone.”
“We saw the email with the speaker’s logo and my cameraman, our cameraman, saw it, too,” Holder said. “I knew then that something had happened, then we confirmed it later.”
CNN cannot independently confirm what Pence was shown during the interview. That evening’s Pence letter had a Vice President’s seal on top.
In the clip, after looking at the email, Pence says to his assistant, “Yes, excellent,” as he is handed the phone with the email. He then offers a wry grin and asks the assistant to “tell Zach to get me a hard copy for the trip home”. Pence then rallies for the rest of the interview.
The next clip shows Pence saying, “I’m always hopeful about America,” against a backdrop of crews erecting security fences around the Capitol building.
Footage of Pence’s interview, which was not previously released, was taken less than a week after pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol to stop certification of Joe Biden’s election victory. Pence had to be taken to safety because of calls from rioters to “hang Mike Pence”.
In the short clip from the documentary, which is set to be released by Discovery Plus, owned by CNN’s parent company, Pence does not comment on the content of the resolution. But the video is a small sample of the additional content now owned by the committee. However, the documentary says the former vice president declined to discuss anything related to January 6th during his interview.
Holder, the filmmaker, appeared behind closed doors Thursday for testimony before the Jan. 6 committee, which likely asked him about what he had observed over the course of nearly six months giving behind-the-scenes access to key Trump figures and even that had the former President himself.
In a clip from a March 2021 interview with Trump in Mar-a-Lago, the former president is asked directly what happened on Jan. 6.
“Well, it was a sad day, but it was a day when there was great anger in our country and people went to Washington primarily because they were angry about an election they felt was rigged,” he said Trump.
“As you know, a very small portion went down into the Capitol, and then a very small portion of them went in,” Trump continued. “But I will tell you that given what happened in the election, they were angry because they are smart and they see and they saw what happened. And I think that was a big part of what happened on January 6th. “
Holder’s three-part documentary “Unprecedented” about the 2020 election will be released later this summer on Discovery Plus. The documentary features never-before-seen footage of the Trump family on the campaign trail and their reactions to the election result.
Trump and his allies have yet to respond publicly to the news that Holder was subpoenaed by the committee, or the disclosure of what was said in the interviews now in the panel’s possession.
The documentary features interviews with Trump as well as three of his children: Ivanka, Don Jr. and Eric, according to clips released by Discovery Plus and obtained by CNN.
Like Trump, his family members speak directly into the camera in the footage. The interviews could provide new insights into what those closest to the former president were saying before and after Jan. 6.
In a short clip obtained by CNN in December 2020, Ivanka Trump told the filmmaker, “As the President has said, every single vote needs to be counted and heard. He stood up for the voiceless.”
These comments seem to contradict the opinion she expressed in the documentary interview.
The documentary also features Pence speaking at length about the process that saw Trump choose him as his running mate. He talks about Trump inviting his family to his estate in Bedminster, NJ and playing golf with the then-GOP candidate as part of his vetting process.
The documentary then notes how Trump attacked Pence on Jan. 6 when rioters called for his hanging, before turning to an interview clip of Trump.
“I think I treat people well, unless they don’t treat me well, in which case you go to war,” Trump said.
UPDATE: This story and headline have been updated to reflect that a spokesman for former Vice President Mike Pence has disputed the content of the email Pence responded to in the documentary. It was also updated to note when the White House press office sent Pence’s letter.