When pressed about whether the former president's actions and inaction on Jan. 6 disqualify him from being commander-in-chief again, Pence said on ABC's "This Week" he was let down, but it's ultimately a decision for the American people.
And he implied they wouldn't choose Trump for president again.
What did Pence say about Trump?
Pence continued the independent streak he displayed during the recent Gridiron dinner in Washington last weekend, when he first said history will hold Trump accountable for Jan. 6, 2021. On Sunday, he reiterated that point and implied 2024 voters may hold him accountable, too.
"Again, he's running for election but as I go around the country, I'm convinced the American people have learned the lessons of that day...," Pence told ABC anchor Jonathan Karl. "They know what happened and they know the fact that the president's reckless words endangered people at the Capitol that day, including me and my family. I believe they'll factor all of that in as they make decisions going forward in this country."
Pence said he was "angry" on Jan. 6 and has been working on forgiveness for a while.
"The president let me down that day," Pence said. "He let the country down that day."
Will Pence support Trump in 2024?
When asked if he could ever support Trump for president again, Pence said "that's yet to be seen."
"I must tell you that I think we'll have better choices," he said in one of his sharpest criticisms.
Pence did not say if he is running for the Republican nomination in 2024, but he expects to decide soon.
If Trump arrested, Pence says any protests should be peaceful, lawful
Trump on Saturday morning claimed he would be arrested Tuesday and urged supporters to protest and "take our nation back," echoing a similar message he spread ahead of Jan. 6.
Pence on Sunday urged calm. "I believe that people understand that if they give voice to this, if this occurs on Tuesday, that they need to do so peacefully and in a lawful manner."
Candy Woodall is a Congress reporter for USA TODAY. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @candynotcandace.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Mike Pence 2024 pick: Predicts 'better choices' than Trump