By Sarah Smith, North America editor, & Max Matza
(BBC) – Former US vice-president Mike Pence has offered his most forceful repudiation of Donald Trump to date during a speech launching his 2024 campaign.
The Republican accused Mr Trump of being unfaithful to the US constitution and of abandoning conservative values.
The former Indiana governor and congressman formally commenced his White House campaign on Wednesday.
The move pits him against his two-time running mate, who he served under in the White House from 2017-21.
At a speech in Ankeny, Iowa, Mr Pence argued that Mr Trump had encouraged the mob that attacked the US Capitol on 6 January 2021, and had incorrectly asserted that Mr Pence had the power to overturn the election result.
“But the American people deserve to know that on that day, President Trump also demanded that I choose between him and the constitution,” he said.
“Now, voters will be faced with the same choice: I chose the constitution and I always will.”
He added that Mr Trump’s actions on 6 January should disqualify him from returning to power.
“I believe that anyone who puts themselves over the constitution should never be president of the United States,” he said.
“And anyone who asked someone else to put them over the constitution should never be president of the United States again.”