The House vote will formalize the select committee that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced last week, which she is putting in place after Senate Republicans blocked the formation of a bipartisan commission to investigate the ‘insurrection.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy declined to answer questions on Tuesday as to whether he would appoint Republicans to the select committee. “The speaker never told me about it,” McCarthy said.
Under the House resolution, Pelosi will appoint eight members to the commission and McCarthy has five positions “in consultation” with Pelosi – meaning the Speaker of the House could veto McCarthy’s selections.
Pelosi is also considering nominating a Republican from his eight caps, according to an aide.
“I supported an independent bipartite commission. It’s the opposite, ”Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, the Ohio Republican who voted to impeach Trump and was the target of Trump’s rally over the weekend, told CNN.
The House select committee is expected to investigate both the security flaws in the Jan.6 attack – when pro-Trump rioters raped the Capitol and disrupted Joe Biden’s certification of victory in November 2020 – as well as the circumstances that led to the attack. This will likely include an account of former President Donald Trump’s role in spreading election theft lies, as well as some Republican lawmakers who supported efforts to overturn the election. The committee could also review McCarthy’s conversation with Trump over the phone as the attack unfolded.
Democrats say Republicans gave them no choice to go ahead with a select committee after Senate Republicans blocked the independent commission and some Republicans downplayed the violence that occurred during the murderous attack of January 6. Pelosi said the commission “will establish the truth of that day and ensure that such an attack does not happen again.”
“They wanted to have joint subpoena power. We gave them the power of joint subpoena on the committee. They wanted it to end before the end of the year. President Pelosi agreed that the Jan. 6 commission had completed its work by the end of the year. Kevin McCarthy refused to take yes for an answer, and now he has the select committee, ”Democratic caucus chair Hakeem Jeffries said on Tuesday.
Pelosi has not said who she would appoint to chair the committee, although House Homeland Security chairman Bennie Thompson is a possible candidate, as his committee has already investigated the January 6 riots. Another possibility is House Administration President Zoe Lofgren, whose panel also probed the insurgency.
If Pelosi names a Republican to the panel, it will likely be one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump. Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, two Republicans who supported impeachment and pushed for an investigation into the Jan.6 attack, declined to comment on the possibility that Pelosi could appoint them to the select committee . Both said it would be up to the speaker to decide.
Michigan Representative Peter Meijer, another Republican who voted to impeach Trump, said Tuesday he was “not yet sure” if he would vote for a measure to create a select committee to investigate on Jan.6.
“It’s a bridge I’ll cross if I get there,” Meijer said when asked if he would be on the panel if asked.
Republican House leaders expect only a handful of defections during the vote, according to GOP sources. Thirty-five Republicans voted to create the foreign commission, but it is widely expected that fewer than 10 will support the select committee and potentially less than five. GOP leaders are not officially whipping the vote, but have recommended their colleagues to oppose it.
McCarthy didn’t say whether he would nominate Republicans to the committee, or which Republicans might be nominated if he did. New York Representative John Katko, the top Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee who negotiated the bipartisan deal for the independent committee, criticized the select committee on Monday and said he did not plan to sit on it if we asked him.
When asked on Tuesday if she would consider vetoing McCarthy’s selections if they were Republicans voting to undo Biden’s victory, Pelosi said, “We’ll see. We will see who they name. “