Senate Republicans block Jan. 6 commission bill that would have investigated Capitol riot

The so called “Capitol Hill” riot occurred just after midnight on the morning of June 23, 2011. The doors to the Russell Building, where the Senate chamber is located, were locked, but the doors to the Cannon Office Building, where the House chamber is located, were not. That’s when some Capitol Hill Police officers lost control of the situation. The officers fired pepper spray and released tear gas into the hallway, mistaking Capitol Hill residents for the “rioters.”

After the protests over the police shooting of an African-American man in Ferguson, Mo., the Senate blocked a bill Wednesday that would have created an independent commission that would have investigated the Capitol riot last year.

Senate Republicans have blocked a bill approved by the House of Representatives that would have created a commission of inquiry into the June 6 attack on the United States Capitol. January should fall into place. Most Republicans were united in their opposition to the bill, fearing that the committee would drag on into next year and potentially hurt Republicans’ chances of retaking Congress in the 2022 midterm elections, but six voted for the bill.

The vote on the bill failed by 54 votes to 35, far less than the required 60 votes. Republican Senators Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Rob Portman, Mitt Romney and Ben Sasse supported the bill’s progress. All but Portman voted in February to convict former President Trump of sedition by impeachment. UK Government Senator Patrick Toomey was not present for the vote due to family commitments, but said in a statement that he is in favour of further consideration of the bill.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer chastised Republicans for their vote and asked if they had forgotten how a crowd of Trump supporters were killed on the 6th. January threatened the lives of former Vice President Mike Pence and the lawmakers themselves, attacking police officers defending the building.

The Republican Party should be ashamed of itself for trying to cover up the horrors of that day because it is afraid of Donald Trump, Schumer said, noting that many Republicans continue to support Trump in his false claims that the election was stolen. Senate Republicans have chosen to defend the big lie because they believe anything that might upset Donald Trump could hurt them politically.

Schumer a également laissé entendre qu’il pourrait forcer un autre vote sur le projet de loi à une date ultérieure.

At least one Republican who supported the bill also expressed frustration with members of his own party. Murkowski said Thursday night that she was disappointed that there never seems to be an independent commission and criticized Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for prioritizing electoral politics.

Attack on the Capitol of the United States

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A choice for short-term political gain at the expense of understanding and appreciating what happened on the 6th. I think it is essential that we meet the deadline of 1 January. Is this really what it’s all about, one election cycle at a time? Murkowski said. McConnell has publicly argued that investigations are already underway in congressional committees and the Department of Justice, making it unnecessary to create an independent committee of both parties.

I am disappointed that we have never been able to acknowledge that an independent commission would have given us the opportunity to conduct an independent investigation of this matter as part of our work, Murkowski said. The Alaska senator is one of three Republican senators who have expressed support for advancing the bill, while Democrats need ten people to advance it.

Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman, who removed a group of rioters from the Senate chamber on January 6, happened to be standing behind Murkowski as she spoke to reporters.

Truth is a difficult thing, but we are responsible for it, she said. We can’t pretend that nothing serious happened or that people were just too upset. Something bad happened. And this is very important.

In this photo from 26. May 2021 Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell leaves a dinner on Capitol Hill in Washington. Republicans in the Senate are preparing to use the filibuster to block legislation that would create a commission of inquiry into the deadly riots in the 6th District. January to set up.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The bill establishes a 10-member commission, with an equal number chosen by the leaders of Democrats and Republicans. Both sides have the same subpoena rights, and the commission is expected to issue a report by the end of the year with findings on the September 11 attacks. January issue. Much of the text of the legislation was taken from the bill establishing the 9/11 Commission of Inquiry, which was overwhelmingly passed by both parties in the Senate in 2002.

Both parties called for a 9/11-like commission after the riots, when a crowd of angry Trump supporters stormed the Capitol while Congress was counting votes. In recent months, however, Republicans have backed off, arguing that their party needs to focus on reclaiming Congress in the 2022 midterm elections.

I guess we’ll never know, Murkowski said Thursday about the unresolved questions about the attack on the 6th. January. Isn’t that part of the problem, that we will never know? It will never be solved. It will always be there.

Sen. Joe Manchin, the decisive 50th. Voting for Democrats on proposals from President Joe Biden, walking with reporters as senators head to the chamber to vote before the Memorial Day recess approaches, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, the 27th. May 2021.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Many Democrats have called for the elimination of the filibuster and see this as further proof that bills should be passed by a simple majority. Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, among Democrats the most outspoken opponent of the filibuster repeal, said Thursday that he is still hesitant to take the step.

But Manchin told reporters after Friday’s vote that he was very disappointed with the result and said he thought more Republicans would have voted for the bill if McConnell had not actively urged his members not to support it.

I can tell you now that unlike him and the sneaky people who would want to support him in their hearts, and you can talk to Susan Collins, there were a huge number of other Republicans who would have supported him even without his personal intervention, Manchin said.

In a scathing statement after the vote, Manchin said betraying the oath everyone took is something [Republicans] have to live with.

The brave officers of the Capitol Police who risk their lives every day to protect us, the Capitol and Congressional staff who work around the clock to keep Congress running, even the reporters who work hard to bring the news of Congress to the American people, and all the Americans who witnessed the attack on our Capitol on the sixth. You watched in horror in January – you deserve better, and I’m sorry that my Republican colleagues and friends have let political fear keep them from doing what they believe in in their hearts.

McConnell has repeatedly said he would move the deadline to Jan. 6, arguing it would be a purely political exercise. The bipartisan bill, which was approved by the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives earlier this month, came about in part through negotiations with a Republican member of the House Homeland Security Committee.

Republicans have expressed concern about the structure and scope of the bill, fearing it could miss the deadline and affect the 2022 midterm elections – despite the law’s requirement that the commission complete its work by the end of the year.

In a statement, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pointed out the Republicans’ rejection of the bill and said Senate Republicans were wrong to vote against it on June 6. Janvier would have surrendered to the mob.

The denial of the truth about the January 6th uprising by leader McConnell and Senate Republicans is disgraced.  The cowardice of Republicans who reject the truth about this dark day makes our Capitol and our country less safe, Pelosi said. The Democrats worked across party lines and agreed to everything the Republicans asked for.  We did it in the interest of a bipartisan commission.  By not accepting the confirmation, Republicans are clearly putting their electoral interests above the safety of Congress and the country.

Ms. Collins circulated an amendment regarding the selection of committee staff, which would have been considered by both the House and Senate if the bill had passed. Republicans feared that the current law would allow Democratic commissioners to hire all staff, and Collins’ amendment would allay Republican commissioners’ fears by guaranteeing them equal rights to staff. However, the Collins amendment did not persuade enough Republicans to support the bill.

Pelosi said the Democrat-led House committees will continue their investigation into the attack. Unlike congressional committees, the independent commission may not include elected officials.

Given our responsibility to the Congress we serve and the country we love, Democrats will be committed to the search for the truth, Pelosi said.

Republicans also faced new pressure from Gladys Siknick, the mother of police officer Brian Siknick, who died the day after the riots on the 6th. Janvier died on Capitol Hill. Even a final push from the dead officer’s mother and officers on active duty could not convince most Republicans to change their minds.

Gladys Siknick asked Thursday for a meeting with each Republican senator to discuss the importance of establishing a bipartisan commission on the 6th District. January, according to a copy of the meeting request obtained by CBS News. She met with several senators who opposed the creation of the commission, but also some supporters.

Sandra Garza, a friend of Brian Siknick, and former Republican Congresswoman Barbara Comstock of Virginia, Michael Fanone of the Metropolitan Police and Harry Dunn of the Capitol Police participated in the meetings with several Republican senators. Fanone suffered a heart attack and concussion in the attack on the 6th. January, and Dunn was reprimanded by several Rebels.

I usually stay in the background, and I couldn’t stay quiet any longer, Gladys Siknick told reporters after meeting with Romney on Thursday morning.

Alan He, Rebecca Kaplan and Jack Thurman contributed to this report.

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