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House closes deal on commission

Home Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) questions witnesses during a ‘global threats to the homeland’ hearing at the Rayburn House office building on Capitol Hill on September 17, 2020 in Washington, DC.

Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

Key House members on Friday announced an agreement to form an independent commission to investigate the Jan.6 insurgency, as lawmakers try to understand the failures that allowed a pro-Trump mob to invade the U.S. Capitol.

The panel of experts will investigate the circumstances of the attack as well as the factors leading to it, according to Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., And non-commissioned member John Katko. , RN.Y., who negotiated the deal. .

The commission will be made up of 10 members who cannot be current government officials. Majority Democrats will nominate five, including the president, and Republicans will choose five, including the vice president.

The group will have subpoena power and will issue a report when it has completed the investigation. The House is expected to vote on a bill creating the commission as early as next week.

“Inaction – or just moving on – just isn’t an option,” Thompson said in a statement. “The creation of this commission is our way of taking responsibility for protecting the United States Capitol.”

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Supporters of the former president Donald trump stormed the Capitol in January as lawmakers counted the president Joe bidenthe electoral victory of. Five people, including a police officer from the Capitol, died as a result of the attack.

The crowd descended on the legislature after the former president made weeks of unsubstantiated claims that widespread fraud cost him the presidential race against Biden. The House impeached Trump in his last days in the White House for inciting an insurgency. The Senate acquitted him after his departure.

Democrats and some Republicans have insisted lawmakers need to better understand what led to the violent attempt to disrupt the transfer of power. They wondered how intelligence and security loopholes allowed rioters to scandalize “Hang Mike Pence” and search for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to get to a few moments to find senior government officials.

Many Republicans – some of whom voted not to count the results of certified state elections after Congress was picked up from the crowd – questioned the need for a commission to study the events of January 6. insurgency, or minimize the attack.

Supporters of US President Donald Trump climb a wall during a protest against Congress’ certification of the 2020 presidential election results at the Washington Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Jim Urquhart | Reuters

Speaking to reporters on Friday morning, Minority House Leader Kevin McCarthy of R-California called “very concerning” the fact that the panel was to investigate security on Capitol Hill only related to January 6 and no on Good Friday, when a man crashed into a car at a checkpoint and killed a Capitol police officer.

McCarthy said he did not read the announced deal.

In a statement issued Friday, Pelosi said that “it is imperative that we seek the truth of what happened on January 6 with an independent, bipartisan 9/11 commission to examine and report on the facts, the causes and security related to the mob terrorist attack. ”The California Democrat reiterated that the House expects to move forward with a separate bill to provide additional funding for the security of the Capitol.

The commission’s announcement comes days after House Republicans removed Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo, from her leadership post as she hammered Trump for spreading conspiracy theories about the election. . Cheney, one of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach the former president, broke with McCarthy by backing a commission that would focus solely on the Jan.6 insurgency.

A hearing this week also highlighted Republican efforts to downplay the attack on Capitol Hill. Rep. Andrew Clyde, R-Ga., Claimed it was not an insurgency but a “normal sightseeing visit”.

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