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Vice President Mike Spence waiting to speak at a press conference

Source: (PHOTO: Cheriss May/Getty Images)

SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Former Indiana governor Mike Pence was directly challenged by an Iowa voter Thursday about his certification of the 2020 election results.

“It’s an issue that continues to be misunderstood,” Pence said during a campaign event in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, “I know by God’s grace, I did exactly what the Constitution of the United States required of me that day.”

During the event, a voter told Pence if it wasn’t for his vote, Joe Biden would not be president. She asked Pence if he ever second guesses himself, insinuates Pence had the authority to send the vote back to the states, and all but said former President Donald Trump was the rightful winner of the 2020 election.

Pence pushed back.

“When Iowa certified your results and sent them to Washington, D.C., when Indiana certified our results, the Constitution of the United States in Article II states that the job of the Vice-President is to serve as the presiding officer of a joint session where you open and count the votes,” Pence explained.

He went on to detail how there were over 60 lawsuits and challenges to state election results, all of which were upheld by the courts and sent to Washington to be certified on January 6th, 2021. Pence says it was his duty to allow disagreements and complaints to be heard, but his job was solely to open and count.

It was on that day that former President Trump apparently asked Pence to not certify the results. Pence ignored the demand, and Joe Biden was elected 46th President of the United States.

Thousands of Trump supporters illegally broke into the Capitol that day, which led to the delay in the certification, riots, injured police officers, and deaths. Several Hoosiers have been charged with crimes related to the Capitol riot.

Pence, along with most lawmakers present that day, were taken to safety until police got the riot under control.

“Constitution affords no authority for the Vice-President, or anyone else, to reject votes or return votes to the states. It’s never been done before, and should never be done in the future,” Pence continued, “no Vice-President in American history ever asserted the authority you’ve been convinced that I have. With all due respect, I said when I announced [candidacy for president], President Trump was wrong about my authority that day, and he’s still wrong.”

He went on to say that Republicans need to move on from the past and voiced his support for passing voter identification laws in every state. Pence is one of several Republican presidential candidates running in 2024, including Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Below is the full exchange, as captured by C-SPAN cameras.