Kevin McCarthy Calls For A Two-Piece Inquiry On Jan. 6 In Audio Newly Aired On CNN
In newly unearthed audio, House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy approved a two-pronged inquiry into the Captiol riots on Jan. 6, 2021, saying former President Donald Trump told him he felt some responsibility for it.
The interview on a local radio station in California just days after the attack resurfaced shortly after McCarthy said he would not cooperate with the now ongoing Jan. 6 investigative panel.
On Thursday, McCarthy was asked by CNN reporter Manu Raju how he had said he was “willing to testify” about Jan. 6, but now he did not support the selected committee’s hearing.
The minority leader of the house interrupted him and said, “That’s not true. Ask your question. I’ll check what’s true there.’
CNN has since dug up two audio clips in which McCarthy called for the investigation and blamed Trump for the attack.
The minority group leader, Kevin McCarthy, responded Thursday when asked why he would not cooperate with the Jan. 6 investigation.
Former President Donald Trump has admitted to some extent his responsibility for the events in a conversation with McCarthy.
McCarthy and Trump have both refused to cooperate in a bipartisan investigation into the riots
CNN reporter Manu Raju asked McCarthy about his earlier comments on Thursday, but the House Republican denied any such statements.
‘I say [Trump] has responsibility,” McCarthy told an interviewer on Bakersfield, California, radio station KERN on Jan. 12, 2021. “He told me personally that he does have some responsibility. I think a lot of people do that.’
McCarthy goes on to say that he has proposed a bipartisan commission and “has got all the facts straight, and works through the grand jury to determine in the end, rather than upfront, whether someone is guilty or not.”
“The only thing with impeachment, why go through it so fast? I say let’s set up a bipartisan committee, let’s learn all the facts,” he added.
The Texas congressman now says he refuses to cooperate with the committee because he believes House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is “playing politics.”
CNN also found audio of McCarthy blaming Trump — and the ex-president somewhat blaming himself — for the riots in a conversation with fellow House Republicans right after the attack.
“I personally asked him today if he is responsible for what happened,” McCarthy is heard to say on January 11, 2021. “Whether he feels bad about what happened. He told me he has some responsibility for what happened. But he has to admit that.’
“Let me be clear to you and I have been very clear to the president,” he added. He bears responsibility for his words and actions. No, if and or but.’
McCarthy said on Thursday that his January 6 conversation with President Donald Trump was “very brief” and that he had nothing to offer the committee investigating the Capitol riots.
A day after rejecting a request from House investigators to provide information about his talks with Trump, McCarthy shrugged off questions during his regular press conference.
Instead, he attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Biden administration’s record.
“My conversation was very brief to advise the president what was going on here,” he said of his January 6 conversation with the president.
“There is nothing I can offer the January 6 committee on legislation… moving forward.
“There is nothing in that realm. It’s pure politics of what they play.’
But in an interview with his home newspaper in the wake of the violence, he characterized the call differently.
He told the Bakersfield Californian they had a “very heated conversation as the riots unfolded and that he urged the president to “get help” to the Capitol.
Those comments were the focus of a letter from committee chair Bennie Thompson asking for more information on Thursday.
McCarthy turned down that request Wednesday night, saying the panel was “not conducting a legitimate investigation.”
That set the stage for a flammable atmosphere at the House minority group leader’s weekly press conference.
Reporters questioned McCarthy why he had publicly criticized Trump after the riots — saying he “carries responsibility” — before changing his tone after meeting at the former president’s Florida home.
McCarthy claimed he didn’t pick Trump.
‘My criticism went to everyone that day: why was the capital so ill-prepared that day? … And how do we ensure that it is never ill-prepared again.’
He described a meeting with the chief of Capitol Police with lawmakers this week and hinted that Pelosi was responsible for officers’ stumbling efforts.
“Some of the questions put to the Capitol Police Department said the chief, that was above his salary to give the answer,” McCarthy said.
‘I asked him well, who’s above you?’
He was also asked why in May last year he said he would testify before the commission investigating the attack, but had apparently changed his mind.
McCarthy said this was two months before Pelosi enacted the committee’s rules so that the minority could not name their selected individuals.
Commission chair Bennie Thompson wrote to McCarthy on Wednesday for help on a variety of topics, including his conversations with the president “before, during and after” the riots.
“So when you asked me that question, I never imagined that a speaker would play such politics and then designate a chairman who starts the committee by saying that the only person who is outside the boundaries is the speaker,” he said. he.
“Maybe if Nancy Pelosi had done what other speakers would do, and not play politics with it. It could have been a different answer.’
Critics within his own party have already accused the House minority leader of trying to cover up what really happened on Jan. 6.
Rep. Liz Cheney, one of the few Republicans to openly criticize Trump for his role in the violence and one of only two GOP members on the committee, told CNN, “I wish he were a brave and honorable man.
“He’s clearly trying to hide what happened. He has a duty to come forward, and then we will find out the truth.”