A spokesman for former Vice President Mike Pence said he will not appeal a judge’s order compelling him to testify before a federal grand jury examining the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, according to multiple reports.
“Vice President Pence will not appeal the Judge’s ruling and will comply with the subpoena as required by law,” Pence spokesman Devin O’Malley said in a statement obtained by Politico. The decision came after a judge last week ruled that Pence could testify before the grand jury about conversations he had with Trump.
It was not immediately clear when Pence might appear before the grand jury, though an adviser told The Washington Post it would likely be later this month. Former President Donald Trump could still appeal the ruling, the newspaper reported.
O’Malley said Pence successfully argued that his testimony should be limited by the Constitution’s speech or debate clause, which protects lawmakers from criminal inquiries pertaining to their official responsibilities, The New York Times and Politico reported.
In his ruling last month, Judge James E. Boasberg said Pence would have to testify about any potentially illegal acts committed by Trump on Jan. 6, 2021, or in the days leading up to the attack, according to the Times.
“The court’s landmark and historic ruling affirmed for the first time in history that the speech or debate clause extends to the vice president of the United States,” O’Malley said Wednesday, according to the newspaper.
Special counsel Jack Smith subpoenaed Pence to testify in the ongoing investigation into whether attempts to stop Joe Biden from taking office in 2020 were criminal, the Post reported. Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Smith to oversee investigations involving Trump in November.