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Former Pence aide says staffers discussed whether Trump would refuse to leave office

A former aide to Vice President Mike Pence has said that White House staffers discussed the possibility that President Donald Trump would refuse to leave office if he loses the November 3 election.

Olivia Troye is a former counterterrorism adviser to Pence who last week joined the campaign against Trump and said she’d be voting for Biden, and has been making the rounds in media interviews.

In an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Friday, she said that and other staffers held ‘closed door’ conversations regarding the president’s potential unwillingness to exit the office after his term expires. 

‘It’s frightening to me, because to be honest, during my tenure at the White House, I’ve had conversations behind closed doors with White House staffers and other government officials, including people in the intelligence community, where we’ve actually discussed what if, what if he loses and refuses to leave, or better yet, what if his plan is four more years of Donald Trump should he win, and would he leave after that?’ Troye said. 

Former Pence staffer Olivia Troye told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that White House staffers discussed the possibility that President Donald Trump would refuse to leave office

Former Pence staffer Olivia Troye told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that White House staffers discussed the possibility that President Donald Trump would refuse to leave office

Controversy erupted this week over Trump's remarks about accepting the results of the election, and refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses

Controversy erupted this week over Trump’s remarks about accepting the results of the election, and refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses

Troye left the White House long before controversy erupted this week over Trump’s remarks about accepting the results of the election. 

‘We’re going to have to see what happens,’ Trump said in response to a reporter. ‘You know, I’ve been complaining about the ballots and the ballots are a disaster.’ 

Trump has repeatedly argued that a massive increase in mail-in ballots this year opens the door to fraud, questioning whether the election would be ‘honest.’

‘Get rid of the ballots, you’ll have a very transfer — you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There’ll be a continuation,’ Trump said during a Wednesday press conference. 

‘The president when he’s joking, if he says that he’s joking, he’s telling you a half truth,’ Troye said in the CNN interview. ‘And in there is something fairly frightening and scary.’

‘What you see is what you get,’ she added. ‘You should trust that. He doesn’t hide it.’

Troye is a former counterterrorism adviser to Pence who last week joined the campaign against Trump and said she'd be voting for Biden, and has been making the rounds in media

Troye is a former counterterrorism adviser to Pence who last week joined the campaign against Trump and said she’d be voting for Biden, and has been making the rounds in media

Trump’s refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses drew swift blowback from both parties in Congress

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters on Thursday: ‘The President will accept the results of a free and fair election.’

In a video and interviews, Troye has accused Trump of mishandling the coronavirus and being more concerned about his reelection prospects than saving lives. 

The White House punched back with an aggressive attack campaign aimed at discrediting her through a barrage of statements, interviews and denunciations from the lectern in the White House briefing room.

‘These are not profiles in courage, but these are profiles in cowardice,’ White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said of Troye dismissing her as part of a ‘fringe club of, quote, `Never Trumpers´ who are desperate for relevancy.’

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Former Pence aide says staffers discussed whether Trump would refuse to leave office