As former Vice President Mike Pence weighs taking on former President Donald Trump in the GOP presidential primary, he’ll also have to take Trump on in the courtroom.
A federal judge ruled that Pence must testify in the investigation into Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020 election, a source familiar with the decision tells NBC News’ Laura Jarrett and Rebecca Shabad.
Meanwhile, Pence told Newsmax that he would be “very happy to cooperate with any further inquiry from members of the Senate” investigating his (and Trump’s and Biden’s) handling of classified material, including senators “seeing the documents.”
The news comes as Pence continues to make stops in early presidential primary states and as he takes on potential rivals.
For example, Pence spokesman Devin O’Malley responded to criticism from former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is also considering a presidential run, telling the Washington Post: “When confronted with an angry mob in the Capitol and a president demanding he violate his oath to the Constitution, Mike Pence stood his ground and did his duty. Chris Christie? He shut down the George Washington Bridge. You choose which one demonstrates leadership.”
Pence is also heading to Iowa on Wednesday night, where he’ll speak at the Johnson County Republicans’ Reagan Dinner.
In other campaign news…
Still a free man: The New York grand jury weighing charges against Trump in a hush money probe isn’t expected to vote on whether to indict him this week, NBC News’ Jonathan Dienst and Zoë Richards report.
Looking for door No. 3: The Washington Post reports that “the desire for a backup option has intensified” among GOP donors, voters and strategists who are questioning whether Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis can take on Trump.
To the Middle East: DeSantis will travel to Israel in late April, the Jerusalem Post reports.
To the border: NBC News’ Ali Vitali reports that former South Carolina Republican Gov. Nikki Haley will travel to the Texas border next week to roll out her presidential campaign’s immigration plan, and she will be joined by Texas Republican Rep. Tony Gonzales.
Christie’s pledge: Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie told Axios that he will not support Trump if he is the GOP presidential nominee.
Tech talk: The New York Times explores how campaigns and organizations such as the Democratic National Committee are experimenting with artificial intelligence. And Politico reports that Democratic campaigns view a TikTok presence as “necessary,” even as Congress weighs banning the app over national security and data privacy concerns.
Billionaire bucks: Big-dollar donors are spending their cash on the Wisconsin Supreme Court race, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The big spenders include Democratic donor George Soros and Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker, as well as GOP megadonors Dick and Liz Uihlein.
A dead heat: A new Northwestern University poll of next week’s Chicago mayoral race has Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson and former city schools chief Paul Vallas tied at 44% (Latinos lean toward Vallas, while Black voters prefer Johnson and white voters slightly prefer Vallas).