Paper Has Harrowing Account of Pence's Close Call

Rioters missed him inside the Capitol by a matter of seconds
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 15, 2021 12:50 PM CST
Report: Rioters Came Within Seconds of Mike Pence
Vice President Mike Pence elbow-bumps with a member of the National Guard as he speaks to troops outside the US Capitol on Thursday in Washington.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, Pool)

We knew Secret Service escorted Mike Pence to safety during the siege on the Capitol. But not until this Washington Post report has it been clear just how close the rioters came to the vice president. As it turns out, they missed seeing him by a matter of seconds. As the story points out, Pence seemed to be the main target of wrath that day because he bucked President Trump's request to overturn the Electoral College results. See this video, with chants of "Hang Mike Pence!" By the Post's account, stitched together through interviews and video, Secret Service escorted Pence from the Senate floor at 2:13pm. At 2:14pm, rioters chased a Capitol Police officer up a flight of stairs to a second-floor landing—less than 100 feet from where Pence, his wife, and his daughter had ducked into a hideaway, per the Post.

"If the pro-Trump mob had arrived seconds earlier, the attackers would have been in eyesight of the vice president as he was rushed across a reception hall into the office," according to the account. Eventually, the Pences were taken to a more secure location in the Capitol for the remainder of the siege. Pence's office isn't commenting on the report. The Secret Service says in a statement that Pence "was secure at all times on Jan. 6." The account emerges after federal prosecutors alleged that the aim of the rioters was to "capture and assassinate" US leaders. That's why rare sedition charges are possible. On Thursday, Pence made a surprise return to the Capitol to personally thank members of the National Guard stationed there after the assault, reports the Hill. (Read more Capitol riot stories.)

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