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Republicans Attempt to Undercut Jan. 6 Committee With Inaccurate Claims

Hours before the House committee investigating the Capitol riots opens its public hearings, Republican lawmakers tried to paint the panel as illegitimate. In a press conference, she denounced the committee’s founding, its work, and chair Nancy Pelosi with false claims. Here’s a fact check.

what was said

“Caught altering evidence, including text messages from our distinguished member Jim Jordan.” — Representative Kevin McCarthy, Republican from California, at a press conference on Thursday

This is exaggerated. This was a reference to a text message presented at a meeting of the select committee investigating the January 6 riots. The text is not fully displayed, but no words have been changed.

Speaking at the meeting, California Democrat Adam B. Schiff said, read and presented a text that an unnamed lawmaker had sent to Mr Meadows: “On Jan. 6, 2021, Vice President Mike Pence, as Senate President, should declare all electoral votes he believes are unconstitutional, as there are no electoral votes at all. “

Mr Schiff went on to argue that the text message illustrated why it was “so important” to continue questioning Mr Meadows.

A few days later, the conservative publication The Federalist . appeared reported that the text came from Representative Jim Jordan, Republican from Ohio, who forwarded it to Mr. Meadows; the message originally came from a lawyer who claimed the vice president had the legal authority to invalidate votes.

The full text read: “On January 6, 2021, Vice President Mike Pence, as Senate President, should declare all electoral votes he believes are unconstitutional, as there are no electoral votes at all — in accordance with Founder Alexander Hamilton’s guidelines and judicial precedence. “No legislative act,” wrote Alexander Hamilton in Federalist No. 78, “Contrary to the Constitution may be valid.” The court in Hubbard v. Lowe reinforced this truth: “That an unconstitutional statute is not a law at all is a statement that is no longer in dispute.” 226 F. 135, 137 (SDNY 1915), Appeal dismissed, 242 US 654 (1916). According to this rationale, an unconstitutionally appointed voter, like an unconstitutional statute, is not a voter at all.”

A spokesperson for the committee recognized shorten the text and apologized for that.

what was said

“She rejected the minority choices to sit on the committee. That goes against 232 years of tradition in this House. You reject the minority to have a say in the committee.” — Mr. McCarthy

false. Seven Democrats and two Republicans are on the select committee, contrary to Mr. McCarthy’s claim that it is completely partisan. In addition, Mr. McCarthy omits to share responsibility for the small number of Republicans participating. His evocation of a two-century tradition of minority involvement is also wrong.

The House has passed a resolution making the selection committee in June 2021, empowering Ms Pelosi to appoint eight members and Mr McCarthy five. A few weeks later, Mr McCarthy . said appointed Representative Jim Banks of Indiana as a member, as well as Mr. Jordan, and Representatives Rodney Davis of Illinois, Kelly Armstrong of North Dakota, and Troy Nehls of Texas.

Mrs. Pelosi turned down Mr. Banks and Mr. Jordan, to argue Trump’s two vociferous supporters could “damage the integrity of the investigation,” but agreed to allow the other three Republicans to participate. In response, Mr McCarthy . said said Republicans would not participate at all unless Mr. Jordan and Mr. Banks were allowed to join the committee.

Ms. Pelosi later named two Republicans who criticized Mr. Trump, Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.

In addition, Mr. McCarthy was wrong in saying that Ms. Pelosi broke with a two-century tradition by rejecting two of his choices. In fact, the speaker appointed members and committee leaders up to 1911, and the speaker has “retained the authority” to appoint members to select committees, according to a guide of MPs.

In other words, the minority party played no part in the nomination process for most of American history, said Joshua C. Huder, a senior fellow and expert in congressional proceedings and history at Georgetown University. After 1911, it was unusual for the majority party to deny the minority party’s choices, but Mr. Huder said, “I know for a fact that they have used informal political weight to restrict who selects the minority.”

what was said

“Was Speaker Pelosi involved in the decision to delay the assistance of the National Guard on January 6? These are serious and real questions that this committee does not even want to ask. Speaker Pelosi won’t answer those questions because she knows the answers to those questions will leave a trail of breadcrumbs in her office, highlighting her negligence and lack of leadership as Speaker of the House. — mr. Banks, at the same press conference

This is misleading. For more than a year, Republican and conservative commentators have repeatedly and misleadingly blamed Ms. Pelosi for the delay in deploying the National Guard to the Capitol on Jan. 6.

There is no evidence that Ms Pelosi’s office rejected a request to deploy the National Guard, or even played a role in approval delays. The decision rests with the Capitol Police Board, which includes the House and Senate sergeant-at-arms and the Capitol architect.

A report by two bipartisan senate committees investigating the Jan. 6 attack attributed delays in requesting the National Guard for “opaque trials.” It noted that members of the Capitol Police Board were unfamiliar with the approval process and made conflicting statements about when to first ask for help.

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