Despite objections from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the House passed a bill approving the 9/11 style January 6 commission to investigate the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.
McCarthy spoke out against creating a bipartisan commission to investigate the attack on the Capitol on Jan. 6. The Congressman says that there are multiple investigations into the riot that already exist.
“Given the political misdirections that have marred this process, given the now duplicative and potentially counterproductive nature of this effort, and given the Speaker’s shortsighted scope that does not examine interrelated forms of political violence in America, I cannot support this legislation,” McCarthy said in a lengthy statement a day before the House was set to vote on the legislation.
Democrat Representative Bennie Thompson and Republican Representative John Katko, who are both on the House of Homeland Security Committee, announced the measure on Friday. Katko, who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump after the insurrection, wants Congress to take action.
“We can’t wait to try and make this [place] safer,” Katko said. “If we act now and we act in an expedited manner, which I think we can, it’s not going to take long to figure out what the failings were at the leadership level of the Capitol Hill police and what their failings were with them not acting on actionable intelligence.”
Former President Donald Trump released a statement Tuesday night calling the commission partisan and unfair.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was determined to put the bill on the floor for a vote.
“I am very pleased that we have a bipartisan bill to come to the floor,” Pelosi told NBC News. “[D]disappointing but not surprising that the cowardice on the part of some on the Republican side – not to want to find the truth.”
The bipartisan legislation passed the Democratic-controlled House 252-175. Thirty-five Republicans voted in favor of the bill.
The January 6 commission legislation will now head to the Senate, where Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has already said he would not support it.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell: “I’ve made the decision to oppose the House Democrats’ slanted and unbalanced proposal for another commission to study the events of January the 6th.” pic.twitter.com/DwoNRrxzPb
— The Recount (@therecount) May 19, 2021
Five members, including a chair, appointed by Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, and another five, including a vice-chair, appointed by McCarthy and McConnell, will form the commission under the legislation. Commissioners will need to have expertise in law enforcement, civil rights, civil liberties, privacy, intelligence, and cybersecurity. The Commission will have the authority to subpoena individuals to secure information for the investigation.