Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) on Sunday declined the chance to criticize former President Trump for defending his supporters’ chants of “hang Mike Pence” on the day of the Capitol insurrection.
Appearing on ABC News, Barrasso was asked to respond to Trump telling reporter Jon Karl that he wasn’t concerned about Pence’s safety on Jan. 6, despite his supporters chanting “hang Mike Pence” as the then-VP refused to give into the then-President’s election fraud falsehoods on the day of the joint session of Congress certifying Joe Biden’s electoral victory. Trump told Karl that it’s “common sense” for his supporters to be “very angry” as he continued pushing baseless claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election.
Pressed on whether the GOP can tolerate a leader who defends murderous chants against his own VP, Barrasso sidestepped the question by insisting that the Republican Party is “incredibly united” before taking a swipe at the policies of the Biden administration.
After singing Trump’s praises by saying that the former president “brings lots of energy to the party” and is an “enduring force,” Barrasso was pressed again on whether he has a problem with Trump saying that hanging Pence is “common sense.”
Barrasso dodged the question again, repeating Trump’s assertion that he believed that Pence’s safety wasn’t endangered on Jan. 6 even as Trump supporters breached the Capitol. Barrasso claimed that he did not hear the chants of “hang Mike Pence.”
“I was with Mike Pence in the Senate chamber during January 6th. And what happened was they quickly got Vice President Pence out of there, certainly a lot faster than they removed the senators. I believed he was safe the whole time,” Barrasso said. “I didn’t hear any of those chants. I don’t believe that he did either. And Vice President Pence came back into the chamber that night and certified the election.”
Asked a third time whether he can tolerate Trump’s defense of his supporters’ chants encouraging violence against Pence, Barrasso replied that “it’s not common sense,” but still wouldn’t condemn the former president’s remarks.
After pointing out that he voted to certify the election, Barrasso declined yet another chance to criticize Trump. Despite saying that he doesn’t agree with Trump on everything, Barrasso went on to stress that he’ll continue supporting Trump’s economic policies.
Watch Barrasso’s remarks below: