House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy announces the withdrawal of his nominees to serve on the special committee probing the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., July 21, 2021. (Elizabeth Frantz/Reuters)
At a briefing on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) vowed that the GOP will sponsor its own investigation into the Capitol riot after Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) pulled two prominent Republicans from the ‘bipartisan’ January 6 committee.
“We will run our own investigation. We have law enforcement, we have military, we have doctors, we have people from all walks of life. They want to know the answer, the American people deserve that. They don’t deserve politics, they don’t deserve destroying the institution. No committee in Congress will work if one person can pick all who can serve. This has not happened before,” McCarthy commented.
The GOP leader’s statement came after Pelosi rejected two Republican appointments, Representatives Jim Jordan (R., Ohio.) and Jim Banks (R., Ind.), to the original inquiry panel. The House resolution forming the committee allowed McCarthy five selections ” in consultation” with Pelosi but technically delegated veto power to her over any potential nominees. McCarthy subsequently withdrew the remaining Republicans from participating in protest, calling Pelosi’s partisan decision an “egregious abuse of power.”
“Unless Speaker Pelosi reverses course and seats all five Republican nominees, Republicans will not be party to their sham process and will instead pursue our own investigation of the facts,” McCarthy said in a statement.
Representative Liz Cheney (R., Wyo.) , who was tapped by Pelosi to serve on the committee after being ousted from her post as GOP conference chair, defended the speaker’s move on Wednesday. “I agree with what the Speaker has done,” she said.
The committee was supposed to have representation from both parties and was scheduled to convene for its first hearing on July 27. Banks and Jordan objected to the 2020 presidential-election results in Arizona and Pennsylvania, citing irregularities and potential voter fraud.
In a statement, Pelosi said the “unprecedented nature” of the Capitol insurrection “demands the unprecedented decision” to disqualify Banks and Jordan from joining the panel. She said she asked McCarthy to recommend two other representatives instead.
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