WASHINGTON, D.C. — Speaking before a prayer breakfast gathering in the nation’s capital this week, Vice President Mike Pence seemed to imply that he believes he could legally kill the president and then pardon himself after he took office.
“First of all, I’ve always believed if your boss hires you to do a job, you show that boss extreme loyalty to the point of doing really stupid things like putting your water bottle on the floor for no reason when he does,” Pence said.
“My boss right now is out there telling people he, as the President of the United States of America, has a right to pardon himself for any crime he ever has or will commit, so I have to go along with that, but remember — it’s out of loyalty to my boss.”
Pence was referring to statements that President Trump has made in public and on Twitter declaring that he has the “absolute right” to pardon himself, though he says he’s done nothing wrong and therefore has no need to do so.
As has been stated by numerous legal scholars, I have the absolute right to PARDON myself, but why would I do that when I have done nothing wrong? In the meantime, the never ending Witch Hunt, led by 13 very Angry and Conflicted Democrats (& others) continues into the mid-terms!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 4, 2018
The question of whether a president can pardon himself seems only to still be unanswered among some in the Republican Party, however. In 1974, President Richard M. Nixon was informed by the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel that a president could not pardon himself because of the “fundamental rule” of law that states one cannot be the judge in their own case. Four days later Nixon resigned the office of the presidency.
“All I’m saying, really, is that if we take the logical conclusion of the president’s legal team’s argument,” Pence said, “the president cannot be charged for committing any crime because he can simply wave his little orange hand and make it all go away. I am here to tell you folks, I will absolutely, 100% back that idea to the fullest extent I can.”
Vice President Pence then mused aloud about the full implications of the precedent President Trump and his legal team are attempting to set. Pence wondered if the opinion would give him the leeway he’d need to do something that some might have considered “straight up assassination” a few years ago.
“Look, if a common citizen walks up to the president and shoots him in the face, that’s straight up assassination, we all know that, and up until a few days ago, I assumed that applied everyone.” Pence said.
“Because no one is above the law. Except the president, now, I guess. So I’m pretty sure I could just shoot him and then pardon myself, because unlike the plebs, er American people, I become the president when ol’ cheese dick dies.”
After a moment of reflection as he stared up toward the Heavens, Pence made a clicking sound in his mouth, shook his head a little bit, and continued.
“But, alas, that’s all just crazy hypothetical talk anyway. We shouldn’t let it distract us from the real work at hand,” Pence said.
“Preparing ourselves for the impending rapture and end times. Can I get an amen?”
The congregation responded in unison.
“LOCK HER UP! LOCK HER UP! LOCK HER UP!”