Sen. Tommy Tuberville spoke with Trump before being evacuated to a secure location on Jan 6.
Tuberville says Trump told him that “I know we’ve got problems” and to “protect yourself.”
The Alabama senator also insists he has “no regrets” about voting to decertify the election results.
Alabama Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville says Former President Trump urged to protect himself on January 6 as Trump’s enraged supporters made their way towards the Senate chamber.
Tuberville’s retelling of the story was first reported in a profile of the senator in the Washington Post on Tuesday. President Trump mistakenly called Sen. Mike Lee of Utah on January 6, prompting him to hand his cellphone to Tuberville in the Senate chamber. Their conversation took place after Vice President Mike Pence had been evacuated, but before the rest of the senators were whisked away.
“I know we’ve got problems,” Tuberville says the president told him on the call. “Protect yourself.”
After being evacuated to a secure location with the rest of the body, Tuberville was one of a dozen Republican senators, all of whom had intended to vote against certifying some state’s electoral votes, that huddled together in a storage closet. Sen. Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming told the Post that the mood was “very heavy,” while Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma reportedly told the group that “we have to pull the country together.”
“I didn’t really listen to them,” Tuberville told the Post, though he did recall other details. “One thing that was brought up was that people were hurt,” he said.
“Do we want to continue this,” he said the senators contemplated, “if there’s not going to be a result we are looking for anyway?”
“I wasn’t voting for me, I was voting for the people of Alabama,” Tuberville told The Post. “President Trump has an 80-percent approval there. I told them, ‘I’m going to vote how you want me to vote.'”
The former Auburn University football coach has taken a surprisingly different path in the months since he was elected, seeking to build relationships across the aisle. He’s also called Trump’s pre-January 6 rhetoric a “mistake” and has said he’s not convinced that voter fraud was responsible for Trump’s defeat. Even so, Tuberville isn’t sorry for his vote on the day of the Capitol riot.
“I have no regrets,” Tuberville told the Post.
Read the original article on Business Insider