If this had happened, if this seemingly academic memorandum had been followed, it is unclear what the outcome would have been. It’s unlikely the courts would have upheld Pence’s trick, but it’s certain there would have been a massive outcry from opposition – rightly so. What Eastman mockingly expresses as “howling” would in reality have been the furious protests of the 81 million Americans whose votes were suddenly thrown in the trash. Not to mention two and a half centuries of precedent for stable, neutral transitions of power. In ‘Peril’ we also learn that Pence paid more attention to this memo than you might expect. He consulted, among others, with former Vice President Dan Quayle, who insisted that Pence had only one role to play on January 6: respect for the results of the votes cast.
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