A day before the deadly Capitol insurrection last year, former Pence chief counsel Greg Jacob issued a stern warning to the then-Vice President, urging him against caving to then-President Trump’s pressure campaign demanding Pence to block or delay the counting of electoral votes during the joint session of Congress certifying Joe Biden’s victory.
In a three-page memo obtained by Politico, Jacob concluded that Pence was at risk of a losing a battle in court if he followed through with conservative attorney John Eastman’s scheme for the then-VP to block or delay the count of the Electoral College votes. The memo, titled “Analysis of Professor Eastman’s Proposals,” is dated Jan. 5. Jacob, however, claimed during his testimony with the Jan. 6 Select Committee in February that he drafted most of the memo a day earlier following a meeting with Eastman.
“If the Vice President implemented Professor Eastman’s proposal, he would likely lose in court,” Jacob wrote.
Additionally, Jacob warned that if the courts rejected the election steal scheme, the then-VP would become embroiled in a “standoff” with members of Congress if he carried out Trump’s Big Lie demand.
““In a best-case scenario in which the courts refused to get involved, the Vice President would likely find himself in an isolated standoff against both houses of Congress, as well as most or all of the applicable State legislatures, with no neutral arbiter available to break the impasse,” Jacob wrote.
Jacob noted Eastman’s acknowledgment that if Pence carried out his election steal scheme, the then-VP would have to violate the Electoral Count Act, outlining four ways that Pence would be breaking the law if he had a hand in Eastman’s plan.
“Eastman’s proposal, by contrast, contemplate[s] an extended recess of the joint session to allow State legislatures to investigate the election and to vote on which slate of electors to certify,” Jacob wrote.
Pence ultimately certified Biden’s electoral victory, defying Trump’s suggestion that the then-VP could overturn the election results. Politico’s report on Jacob’s memo was published days after the Jan. 6 Select Committee’s first public hearing, in which the panel made clear that the Capitol insurrection was a sweeping, premeditated and complex conspiracy to subvert the 2020 presidential election results.
Jacob is reportedly scheduled to testify during a public hearing on Thursday about his involvement in pushing back against Trump and his allies’ election steal pressure campaign, which includes rebuffing Eastman’s fringe theories and unsuccessful efforts to pressure Pence against certifying Biden’s electoral victory.