WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday rejected two Republicans tapped by House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy to sit on a committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, a decision the Republican denounced as “an egregious abuse of power.”
McCarthy said the GOP won’t participate in the investigation if Democrats won’t accept the members he appointed.
Pelosi cited the “integrity” of the probe in refusing to accept the appointments of Indiana Rep. Jim Banks, picked by McCarthy to be the top Republican on the panel, or Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan. The two men are outspoken allies of former President Donald Trump, whose supporters laid siege to the Capitol that day and interrupted the certification of President Joe Biden’s win. Both of them voted to overturn the election results in the hours after the siege.
Democrats have said the investigation will go on whether the Republicans participate or not, as Pelosi has already appointed eight of the 13 members — including Republican Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, a Trump critic — and that gives them a bipartisan quorum to proceed, according to committee rules.
Pelosi said she had spoken with McCarthy and told him that she would reject the two names.
“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 move is emblematic of the raw political tensions in Congress that have only escalated since the insurrection and raises the possibility that the investigation — the only comprehensive probe currently being conducted of the attack — will be done almost entirely by Democrats. Pelosi originally tried to create an independent investigation that would have been evenly split between the parties, but Senate Republicans blocked that approach in a vote last month.
McCarthy immediately issued a statement that said her move will damage the institution of Congress.
“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.
Shortly afterward, he blasted the Democratic leader in a news conference with all five members. “The only way to reverse this is to seat these five,” McCarthy said.
It is unclear how McCarthy would lead a separate investigation, as the minority does not have the power to set up committees. But he said the panel has lost “all legitimacy” because Pelosi wouldn’t allow the Republicans to name their own members.
Most in the GOP have remained loyal to Trump despite the violent insurrection of his supporters that sent many lawmakers running for their lives. McCarthy wouldn’t say for weeks whether Republicans would even participate in the probe, but he sent the five names to Pelosi on Monday.
Pelosi accepted McCarthy’s three other picks — Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis, North Dakota Rep. Kelly Armstrong and Texas Rep. Troy Nehls. But McCarthy said that all five or none would participate.
Like Jordan and Banks, Nehls voted to overturn Biden’s victory. Armstrong and Davis voted to certify the election.
Banks recently traveled with Trump to the U.S.-Mexico border and visited him at his New Jersey golf course. In a statement after McCarthy tapped him for the panel, he sharply criticized the Democrats who had set it up.
“Make no mistake, Nancy Pelosi created this committee solely to malign conservatives and to justify the Left’s authoritarian agenda,” Banks said.
Democrats whom Pelosi appointed to the committee earlier this month were angry over that statement, according to a senior Democratic aide familiar with the private deliberations and who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss them. They were also concerned over Banks’ two recent visits with Trump, the person said.
Jordan, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, was one of Trump’s most vocal defenders during his two impeachments and last month likened the new investigation to “impeachment three.” Trump was impeached by the House and acquitted by the Senate both times.
The back-and-forth came after all but two Republicans opposed the creation of the select committee in a House vote last month, with most in the GOP arguing that the majority-Democratic panel would conduct a partisan probe. Only Cheney and another frequent Trump critic, Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, voted in favor of the panel.
Cheney told reporters she agrees with Pelosi’s decision to reject Jordan and Banks. “The rhetoric around this from the minority leader and from those two members has been disgraceful,” she said.
Pelosi has the authority to approve or reject members, per committee rules, though she acknowledged her move was unusual. She said “the unprecedented nature of January 6th demands this unprecedented decision.”
The panel will hold its first hearing next week, with at least four rank-and-file police officers who battled rioters that day testifying about their experiences. Dozens of police officers were injured as the crowd pushed past them and broke into the Capitol building.
Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson, the chair of the panel, said the committee would carry out its duties.
“It has been more than 6 months since the attack, we owe it to our democracy to stay the course and not be distracted by side-shows,” Thompson said in a statement. “That is exactly what we will be doing next Tuesday, when the bipartisan committee members take testimony from frontline heroes who put their lives on the line to protect our democracy.”
Seven people died during and after the rioting, including a woman who was shot by police as she tried to break into the House chamber and three other Trump supporters who suffered medical emergencies. Two police officers died by suicide in the days that followed, and a third officer, Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, collapsed and later died after engaging with the protesters. A medical examiner determined he died of natural causes.
Associated Press writer Kevin Freking in Washington contributed to this report.
Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.
““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”. Yep, Nancy, you are the truth of the devil, you Nancy are the Pravda truth. Like you said Nancy, you are a faithful Catholic, you are pro abortion / murder of children in the womb, so you are the truth, right Nancy?
Like most Devils who disguise their true intentions, she claims to be a good catholic and a follower of “The great I AM”, but in her actions and deceptions repeatedly exposes her true self as a worshipper of “THE GREAT I AM NOT” who also fell from grace because he began believing his own lies.
She wouldn’t know the truth if she got BURIED IN IT.
Nancy Plosi, democrat Speaker OF zthe House, Walks Around Doing whatever she wants with Impunity.it remindx me of who Nancy Pelosi thinks she is, ” Balls, said the Queen, If I had two, I’d be King. “
“Pelosi cited the “integrity” of the probe in refusing to accept the appointments of Indiana Rep. Jim Banks, picked by McCarthy to be the top Republican on the panel, or Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan.”
“The integrity of the probe”. Nancy, since when did anything you touch bear any resemblance to integrity? This whole thing is nothing but drama and optics. I’m surprised you’re not holding it in the basement with Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler and preventing the Republicans from even commenting.
This is what happens when you put strength and power into the hands of a weakling coward, way too frightened to compete one on one fairly by rigging the system to control the argument, all the while bragging how she became the first female Speaker to break the glass ceiling which in reality began to just break the rules. Whenever the ego and emotion take over to control the human being, the mouth and brain stop doing the talking and the sphincter muscles then take over the speech. Pelosi has to ban that and those which she fears will direct or correct her, or her distorted political reality becomes unbearable and the fraud of the illusion of her leadership ability gets exposed. Leadership is getting the job done through others which makes others successful. Leadership is creating asynergy with people so that the combined strength is greater than the sum of the individuals. Nancy however is too frightened to make THE PEOPLE strong lest they awaken and throw her out on her ear. Just wait till the history books are written to see what a weak pathetic manipulator and waster of the power and people entrusted to her care and repeated missed opportunity for making America great again which could have made her great and famous as well, but she chooses weakness and infamy of a bully instead which also makes her a coward. As for Cheney, she will next run as a Democrat for she too loves power more than THE PEOPLE.
COME AGAIN? She is as far from integrity as one can get!
Nasty nancy, true to form, doing the devil’s work.
Of course she’s doing Satan’s work. She’s his daughter so I don’t expect her to do anything else.
MAY HE CALL HER BACK HOME< and soon!!!!
This disgraceful Nasty Nancy Pelosi is consumed by insane Hate for President Donald Trump and our U.S.A..
The dishonorable socialist Democrat Party revolves around and its philosophy is based on Control, Hate, Lies, Cons, Deceptions, Immorality and the lack of Integrity, Ethics or Honor.
“likened the new investigation to “impeachment three.”, Trump was impeached by the House and acquitted by the Senate both times.
Nancy Pelosi admitted an unfortunate truth about her fabricated impeachment “farce”
– It hinges on witness’s “allegations” not “proof”.
It’s Not A Question” Of “Proof”, It’s About “Allegations”
This traitorous, dishonorable, disgraceful, hateful Nasty Nancy Pelosi, Democrat Misleader of the House of Representatives is a Disgrace to the U.S.A. and a disgrace to humanity.
This Democrat Party has become our country’s most destructive and deadliest ENEMY and needs to be destroyed!
PROVING (for those with any doubt [or denial]) that Pelosi’s “investigation” IS A SHAM (just like the Trump/Russia collusion witch hunt, and the BOGUS impeachments [kangaroo court])!
This is the way North Korea acts, NOT how the United States congress should be conducting itself!
This is an embarrassment (but, clearly, NOT to Pelosi nor the Democrats [including the (so-called) “mainstream” media])!
WE ALL Knew it was a sham, from day one…
well folks after reading your comments i can honestly say that i can not add to them.
The committee lost its integrity the moment Nacy Pelosi appointed Liz Cheney to serve taking up one of the minority leaders picks. If she wanted Cheney so badly it should have been a Democrat spot used! As made clear by some of the Democrats appointed by the Speaker they are afraid of these two Republicans. Wonder Why? They will be asking hard questions and presenting disturbing views which cannot be dismissed.
What pelosi is doing would be similar to this scenario: Would the kkk invite a black person to a battle plan meeting?
Pelosi simply can’t stand the TRUTH ! She’s the Devils Advocate and she to know the TRUTH and Protest it she would
be Burned to a sinder.
Another sham distraction to keep the Media away from the true corruption that dominates all activity in that Commie cesspool called District of Columbia.
The democrats seem to know how to win. President Trump’s 4 aces were beaten by Biden’s 5 aces. I guess when the opposing team is not allowed to come to bat, and when your side has unlimited strikes, outs, or innings, the end score is predictable.
That’s why it matters not WHO WE the people vote for, but, who COUNTS THE VOTES, that have the power…