‘Mike, you have no flexibility on this. None. Zero. Forget it. Put it away,’ Mr Quayle reportedly told Mr Pence
Former vice president Dan Quayle has emerged as an unlikely hero in the saga of the plot to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Peril, a new Bob Woodward book detailing the chaotic final days of the Donald Trump presidency, reveals for the first time a private conversation between Mr Quayle and Vice President Mike Pence before the certification of the 2020 election.
Mr Pence was under pressure from Mr Trump and his allies to refuse to certify the results of the election, and was searching for a legal avenue to delay or deny Joe Biden’s victory.
In late December, Mr Pence asked Mr Quayle, George HW Bush’s former vice president, if there was any way he could stop the results of the 2020 Presidential election from being certified on 6 January.
According to the book, Mr Quayle told him: “Mike, you have no flexibility on this. None. Zero. Forget it. Put it away.”
Mr Pence then asked if he could delay the certification, citing bogus reports of widespread voter fraud in Arizona.
Mr Quayle reportedly responded by saying he was in Arizona, and Mr Biden had won fair and square.
Mr Quayle was responsible for certifying the results of the 1992 presidential election when Bill Clinton defeated his former boss, Mr George Bush senior.
Mr Woodward’s book, co-written with the Washington Post’s Robert Acosta, details a “tense encounter” in the Oval Office on 5 January where Mr Trump tries to convince his vice president to block certification of the election.
Mr Pence refuses, saying: “I’ve done everything I could and then some to find a way around this. It’s simply not possible.”
A furious Mr Trump says he doesn’t want to be friends anymore, according to CNN, who obtained an advance copy of Peril.
Mr Pence was targeted by rioters during the 6 January attack on the US Capitol, who chanted “Hang Mike Pence” as they stormed the building.
Punchbowl News founder Jake Sherman told MSNBC that Peril recasts Mr Pence’s role in the failed plot.
“The book depicts Pence as much more mealy-mouthed about January 6 than we thought he was,” Mr Sherman said.
“It just shows you that Pence was either struggling deeply to deal with the pressure he was facing from Trump or he was more open to this.”
MSNBC anchor Andrea Mitchell responded by saying: “Wow, Dan Quayle comes to the rescue of the republic.”
Peril is the third book written about the Trump presidency by Mr Woodward after 2018’s Fear and the 2020 release Rage.