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The Democrat-led House voted 252-175 on Wednesday to establish a 9/11-style commission to ostensibly investigate the Jan. 6th riot at the U.S. Capitol.
The Democrat bill passed with the support 35 Republicans, though to be clear, it would have still passed 217-210 had they not chosen to switch sides on this matter.
The names of the 35 who switched sides may be seen below, via the U.S. House:
- Liz Cheney of Wyoming
- Tom Rice of South Carolina
- Dan Newhouse of Washington
- Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio
- Adam Kinzinger of Illinois
- Fred Upton of Michigan
- Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington
- Peter Meijer of Michigan
- John Katko of New York
- David Valadao of California
- Tom Reed of New York
- Don Bacon of Nebraska
- John Curtis of Utah
- Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania
- Andrew Garbarino of New York
- Tony Gonzales of Texas
- Dusty Johnson of South Dakota
- David Joyce of Ohio
- Chris Smith of New Jersey
- Van Taylor of Texas
- Chris Jacobs of New York
- David McKinley of West Virginia
- Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska
- Maria Elvira Salazar of Florida
- Mariannette Miller-Meeks of Iowa
- Steve Womack of Arkansas
- Stephanie Bice of Oklahoma
- French Hill of Arkansas
- Mike Simpson of Idaho
- Rodney Davis of Illinois
- Blake Moore of Utah
- Michael Guest of Mississippi
- Trey Hollingsworth of Indiana
- Carlos Gimenez of Florida
- Cliff Bentz of Oregon
While the successful vote earned cheers from Democrats and their media allies, it drew backlash from Republicans, particularly Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene.
Speaking on the House Floor, the firebrand lawmaker argued that the commission will be used to “smear Trump supporters and President Trump for the next few years and cover up the damage” that’s being done to the American people via Democrat policies.
She also slammed Democrats for refusing to show as much interest in investigating the deadly Black Lives Matter riots that occurred all throughout 2020.
The January 6th Commission will be used to smear President Trump and his supporters for the next few years and cover up the real damage to the American people: Democrat policies.
I am OPPOSED. pic.twitter.com/EhGehY1FlK
— Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (@RepMTG) May 19, 2021
How can Congress spend taxpayer money & create a Jan 6 commission to investigate the riot at the Capitol and refuse to acknowledge, investigate, & stop the Antifa/BLM riots that the PEOPLE have been victims of?
Congress only cares about itself and cares NOTHING about the People! pic.twitter.com/bMA6M3pZkm
— Marjorie Taylor Greene 🇺🇸 (@mtgreenee) May 19, 2021
Her belief that the commission will be purposefully exploited by Democrats for political gain is also shared by the editorial board of The Wall Street Journal.
“Do not expect this largely partisan vote to yield a bipartisan accounting of the Capitol riot. … Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been driving this idea, and she has a record of using these commissions for partisan ends. Her goal here is drive her narrative that the riot was a planned attempted coup, and to run on that theme to keep the House in 2022,” the board warned in an op-ed Tuesday.
In his own objections voiced Tuesday, McCarthy also complained about the clear-cut political motivations driving Democrats’ push for a commission and, like Greene, drew attention to other forms of violence — namely last year’s riots.
“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,” he said in a statement Tuesday.
The problem for McCarthy is that many Republicans blame him for this legislation even existing. Back in January, he “empowered one of his allies, moderate Rep. John Katko of New York, to cut a bipartisan deal with his Democratic counterpart on an independent, 9/11 style commission to investigate the deadly Capitol riots,” according to Politico.
He did so despite realizing that Katko was one of the 10 Republicans who’d voted in January to impeach then-President Donald Trump over the Jan. 6th riot.
And then “when Katko ultimately struck an agreement, which included most of McCarthy’s demands, the GOP leader balked at the plan,” Politico notes. And then when Katko began urging other Republicans to join him in supporting the commission, McCarthy was unable to stop him because it was already too late.
“I urge all of you in this body, all of you on both sides, not just my side or not just your side, all of us, to set aside politics, just this once — just this once, I beg you — and pass this bill,” Katko reportedly said on the House floor Wednesday.
Rep. John Katko (R-NY): “I urge all of you in this body, all of you on both sides, not just my side or not just your side, all of us, to set aside politics, just this once. Just this once. I beg you, and pass this bill.”
applause when he finished.
— Michael McAuliff (@mmcauliff) May 19, 2021
The only good news for Republicans is that the bill stands a lower chance of making it through the GOP-led Senate. To push it through, Democrats must convince 10 Republicans to switch sides. But even anti-Trump Republicans like Sen. Ben Sasse seem skeptical and have complained about the potential politicization.
“A lot of the jabbering in the House — for and against this thing — seems like thinly-veiled midterm strategy,” he reportedly said Wednesday.
Sasse, who voted to convict Trump, on Jan. 6 commission: “How can we rebuild public trust? The ongoing criminal investigations and the bipartisan work in the Rules Committee and HSGAC are part of that work — maybe a commission is too, but I’m reserving judgement on that …
— Burgess Everett (@burgessev) May 19, 2021
… A lot of the jabbering in the House — for and against this thing — seems like thinly-veiled midterm strategy and, if that’s all this becomes, it’d be better for historians to take the long-view than for politicians to take the short-view.”
— Burgess Everett (@burgessev) May 19, 2021
As for former President Trump, he cleared up his feelings on the matter in a blog post published Tuesday.
“Republicans in the House and Senate should not approve the Democrat trap of the January 6 Commission. It is just more partisan unfairness and unless the murders, riots, and fire bombings in Portland, Minneapolis, Seattle, Chicago, and New York are also going to be studied, this discussion should be ended immediately. Republicans must get much tougher and much smarter, and stop being used by the Radical Left. Hopefully, Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy are listening!” he wrote.
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