Former Vice President Mike Pence vowed Sunday to “clean house on the whole top floor” of the Department of Justice if he is elected president in 2024.
Pence, who is seeking the Republican Party’s nomination for president, said he knows firsthand what it’s like to be treated unfairly by the DOJ due to what conservatives believe is political bias.
“I mean, it started in 2016, when James [Comey] gave Hillary Clinton a pass, right, that no other American would have gotten,” he argued. “But then what we found out since is the truth about what was going on during the Mueller investigation.”
“You know, I lived through that for two and a half years when we were busy rebuilding our military, cutting taxes, unleashing American energy, securing our border, all the while we actually had FBI agents that were falsifying documents and pushing a political agenda within the Justice Department,” he continued.
Former Vice President Mike Pence during a Fair-Side Chat with Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines on Friday, Aug. 11, 2023. (Rachel Mummey/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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“It’s one of the reasons why I tell people that if I have the privilege of being president of the United States, we’re not just gonna have a new attorney general and a new FBI director, Chuck, but I’m gonna clean house on the whole top floor of the Justice Department and demand that we have men and women who are respected on both sides of the aisle as people of integrity who will apply the rule of law in this country equally to every American,” he added.
Attorney General Merrick Garland on Friday appointed U.S. Attorney David Weiss as special counsel in the federal investigation into Hunter Biden. Republicans immediately criticized Garland’s selection of Weiss, who led the prosecution in Hunter Biden’s tax and gun charges that conservatives blasted as too lax.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, his wife Karen Pence, left, and Sen. Joni Ernst tour the Iowa State Fair on Aug. 11, 2023, in Des Moines. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., called Garland’s announcement “part of the Justice Department’s efforts to attempt a Biden family coverup in light of [House Oversight Republicans’] mounting evidence of President Biden’s role in his family’s schemes selling ‘the brand’ for millions of dollars to foreign nationals.”
Pence on Sunday placed less confidence in the special counsel’s probe of Hunter Biden than the investigation currently led by House Republicans.
“I think Joe Biden has weakened America at home and abroad, but frankly, the pattern of the Justice Department during our four years in the White House and since has undermined public confidence in equal treatment under the law,” Pence said.
Former Vice President Mike Pence arrives to flip pork burgers at the Iowa Pork Producers tent during the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines on Aug. 11, 2023. (Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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“And while I welcome the appointment of a special counsel, which is of course appropriate and is a minimum where the attorney general has a potential conflict of interest, I’m also comforted by the fact that Congress is going to continue to do its work,” he said. “I’m confident that House Republicans are going to continue to bring forward the facts in this case. The American people have a right to know whether or not President Biden’s family benefited or that he himself benefited when he was serving in the job that I had as vice president of the United States in a financial way from foreign nationals.”
Pence is polling in fourth place in the GOP primary with 5.2% of the vote, behind Vivek Ramaswamy at 6.1%, Ron DeSantis at 15.1%, and former President Donald Trump as the clear front-runner with 54.2%, according to the RealClearPolitics national average.