The vice president, who had remained loyal to Mr Trump for four years to the point of submission, was in return angry at the president’s public whip. Senator James M. Inhofe, Oklahoma Republican, told The Tulsa World that Mr. Pence privately expressed a sense of treason on the part of Mr. Trump “after all the things I’ve done for him”.
Even when the vice president had to be evacuated during the siege on Wednesday, the president never spoke to him personally to make sure he was okay. The secret service agents wanted the Vice President to leave the building, but he refused and, according to two officers, protected himself in the basement. The leaders of Congress were taken to Fort McNair for their safety, but the Vice President later asked them to stop the Capitol census.
On Thursday, according to administrators, Mr Pence did not walk into the White House complex but worked from the Vice President’s residence.
He wasn’t the only one feeling betrayed by the president. At the White House, the aides were angry and desperate, convinced that Mr Trump had effectively undermined four years of work, and made sure his presidency was defined in history by the image of sending a mob into the Capitol to help Attacking democracy.
Ms. Chao resigned a day after her husband, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, vehemently rejected Mr Trump’s efforts to overturn the election. “Yesterday our country had a traumatic and completely avoidable event when supporters of the president stormed the Capitol after a rally he had spoken of,” she wrote in her letter of resignation. “I’m sure I was deeply concerned about many of you that I just can’t put it aside.”
In her own letter, Ms. DeVos placed the responsibility for the mess right at Mr. Trump’s feet. “There is no doubt about the impact your rhetoric had on the situation, and it is the turning point for me,” she wrote, just a few weeks after Mr. Trump pardoned four security companies convicted of war crimes in Iraq they had worked for her brother Erik Prince.