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House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday pulled all five of his nominees to the special committee investigating the January 6th MAGA riot after Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected two of them.
Each side accused the other of playing politics with the panel tasked to study the origins and effects of the riot, which resulted in five deaths and damage to historic artifacts in the Capitol.
And each side feared with the other would ask: Democrats putting the focus on former President Donald Trump and his actions that day; Republicans questioning why there wasn’t enough security at the Capitol, which would have fallen under Pelosi’s purview as speaker.
McCarthy charged Pelosi with ‘playing politics’ and creating a ‘sham process’ with her decision to reject Republican Congressmen Jim Banks and Jim Jordan, both strong allies of Trump, from serving on the panel.
Both men voted to challenge certification of President Joe Biden’s election victory and have promoted the ‘big lie’ – the false argument that Trump actually won in 2020 and was the victim of election fraud.
Pelosi said in a statement she made her decision based on the ‘integrity’ of the investigation. As speaker, Pelosi has final say on who sits on the panel.
‘With respect for the integrity of the investigation, with an insistence on the truth and with concern about statements made and actions taken by these Members, I must reject the recommendations of Representatives Banks and Jordan to the Select Committee,’ Pelosi said in a statement.
‘The unprecedented nature of January 6th demands this unprecedented decision,’ she added.
McCarthy slammed Pelosi for her decision.
‘Why are you allowing a lame duck speaker to destroy this institution? This is the people’s house. Not Pelosi’s house,’ he said in a hastily arranged press conference on Capitol Hill.
Pelosi is not a lame duck speaker. Republicans would have to win a majority in the 2022 election for that to happen.
McCarthy vowed to hold his own investigation that he said would include a look at Trump’s role in the January 6th riot, where the former president’s supporters stormed the Capitol to interrupt the certification of Biden’s presidential victory.
‘This represents an egregious abuse of power and will irreparably damage this institution,’ McCarthy said in a statement blasting Pelosi’s move, saying it showed ‘this panel has lost all legitimacy and credibility and shows the Speaker is more interested in playing politics than seeking the truth.’
The House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol’s investigation was expected to be highly contentious. The panel will hold its will hold its first hearing in six days, on Tuesday, July 27.
House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy pulled all five of his nominees to the special committee investigating the January 6th MAGA riot after Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected two of them
Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday rejected two of House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy’s picks, citing integrity of panel investigating January 6th riot
Speaker Pelosi objected to the inclusion of Republican Congressmen Jim Banks (left) and Jim Jordan (center), both strong allies of former President Donald Trump, to the committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot
Democrats pushed for the creation of a 9/11-style commission to investigate January 6, but that was tanked by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Instead the House is forming a 1/6 select committee to probe the Capitol riot (pictured)
But Pelosi’s rejection of two of the other party’s picks is unprecedented. Leaders of the respective parties usually respect each other’s decisions.
‘We need a comprehensive investigation as to who organized this attack, who paid for it, how they nearly succeeded in overthrowing a presidential election, why they did it and how we must organize ourselves to prevent anything like it from ever happening again,’ she said in her statement.
The White House supported Pelosi’s move.
‘The President has made clear that the shameful events of January 6th deserve a full, independent, and transparent investigation to ensure something like that never happens again, and he has full confidence in the Speaker’s ability to lead that work,’ Biden spokesman Michael Gwin said in a statement.
Jordan was among the group of House Republicans who met with Trump in December to help plan the effort to challenge Biden’s victory. Democratic members of the committee were considering calling him as a potential witness in their investigation.
THE CAPITOL RIOT SELECT COMMITTEE: SEVEN DEMOCRATS AND ONE REPUBLICAN
Speaker Pelosi appointed the eight lawmakers below as her picks to the panel investigating the January 6th MAGA riot:
• Chair Bennie Thompson: Chair of Homeland Security Committee
• Chair Zoe Lofgren: Chair of Committee on House Administration
• Chair Adam Schiff: Chair of House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
• Rep. Pete Aguilar, House Administration and Appropriations Committees
• Rep. Liz Cheney, Armed Services Committee
• Rep. Stephanie Murphy, Armed Services Committee
• Rep. Jamie Raskin, Oversight and Judiciary Committees
• Rep. Elaine Luria, Navy veteran, Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees
He also blasted Pelosi’s move as ‘politics’ and argued: ‘The fundamental question of why wasn’t there a proper, proper security presence at the Capitol that day.’
Pelosi’s spokesperson told DailyMail.com that particular GOP strategy was ‘desperate’.
‘On January 6th, the Speaker, a target of an assassination attempt that day, was no more in charge of Capitol security than Mitch McConnell was,’ Drew Hammill said. ‘This is a clear attempt to whitewash what happened on January 6th and divert blame.’
He added: ‘I would hope the media would do better and treat this as the utter nonsense that it is.’
Jordan was a fiery defender of Trump when he sat on the panel investigating Trump’s first impeachment.
Banks helped arrange for House Republicans to join the former president on a recent trip to the border.
‘This just goes to show how partisan of an exercise we said this was all along,’ he said Wednesday at the Republicans’ press conference. ‘She knew we would fight back against their political games, and that’s why she didn’t want us to participate in this committee.’
He was to serve as ranking member but, shortly after McCarthy appointed him to the panel, Banks put out a statement blasting its creation, saying it was done so ‘solely to malign conservatives and to justify the Left’s authoritarian agenda.’
McCarthy named his five members of his party to the panel on Monday. He also appointed Rodney Davis, Kelly Armstrong and Troy Nehls to the committee.
Nehls also voted against Biden’s election certification. But Pelosi said she would accept those three lawmakers to serve.
Republicans opposed Pelosi’s original call for a 9/11-style bipartisan commission. McCarthy opposed it in the House where it passed with Democratic support. But the bill died in the Senate once Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced he would not support it.
Republicans wanted the commission to have a larger scope – and not just study what happened on January 6, but other acts of so-called ‘political violence’ including last summer’s Black Lives Matter protests.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy also had chose Rep. Kelly Armstrong (left) of North Dakota and Rep. Rodney David (right) of Illinois to serve on the 1/6 select committee
House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy and the five Republicans he appointed to the January 6th committee at a news conference in the Capitol on Wednesday
Pelosi earlier this month announced eight members of the committee, including one Republican, Rep. Liz Cheney, who has been one of the most prominent critics of former President Donald Trump.
McCarthy said at the time he was shocked that Cheney would accept Pelosi’s invitation to be on the committee.
The special congressional panel was created to investigate the events leading up to and on January 6, when Trump supporters stormed the Capitol in an attempt to stop Democrat Joe Biden from being certified the winner of last November’s presidential election against Trump.
Republican leaders resisted any special panel to investigate the deadly Capitol assault, noting existing congressional committees had been doing their own probes and that more than 500 people had already been charged with crimes.
Rep. Troy Nehls, a Republican from Texas, was also picked by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to serve on a 1/6 select committee
Some Republicans have downplayed the attack, with Rep. Andrew Clyde comparing it to a visit by tourists.
Four people died on the day of the violence, one shot dead by police and the other three of natural causes.
A Capitol Police officer who had been attacked by protesters died the following day.
Two police officers who took part in the defense of the Capitol later took their own lives. More than a hundred police officers were injured.
Just before the attack, Trump delivered fiery remarks at the White House and then encouraged his supporters to march to Capitol Hill.
Source: Daily Mail