OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has rejected the appointments of Republican Reps. Jim Jordan and Jim Banks to the January 6 commission and House Minority Leader and California Rep. Kevin McCarthy has responded by pulling all of his picks.
They were appointed, with three other Republicans, by Rep. McCarthy days ago in an effort to cooperate with the Democrat-led committee as he was requested to do.
“Speaker Nancy Pelosi has taken the unprecedented step of denying the minority party’s picks for the Select Committee on January 6. This represents an egregious abuse of power and will irreparably damage this institution. Denying the voices of members who have served in the military and law enforcement, as well as leaders of standing committees, has made it undeniable that this panel has lost all legitimacy and credibility and shows the Speaker is more interested in playing politics than seeking the truth,” he said on his website.
“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,” he said.
Pelosi announced her rejection of the appointments in a press release on her website.
“The violent domestic attack on Congress on January 6th was the worst assault on the Capitol since the War of 1812 and the worst domestic assault on American Democracy since the Civil War. We are facing a radically new threat in the kinds of forces that combined to attack our government on January 6th. The future of our democracy is on the line. This assault was an attempt to overthrow the government.
“We need a comprehensive investigation as to who organized this attack, who paid for it, how they nearly succeeded in overthrowing a presidential election, why they did it, and how we must organize ourselves to prevent anything like it from ever happening again.
“It had been our hope to establish a bipartisan, independent National Commission, but there is no prospect for that Commission at this time because of insufficient support from Republican Senators. Therefore, the House established the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol. The Select Committee on the January 6th Insurrection will investigate and report upon the facts and causes of the terrorist mob attack on the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021. It will also be charged with reporting its findings, conclusions, and recommendations for preventing future attacks.
“Monday evening, the Minority Leader recommended 5 Members to serve on the Select Committee. I have spoken with him this morning about the objections raised about Representatives Jim Banks and Jim Jordan and the impact their appointments may have on the integrity of the investigation. I also informed him that I was prepared to appoint Representatives Rodney Davis, Kelly Armstrong, and Troy Nehls, and requested that he recommend two other Members.
“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.
“The unprecedented nature of January 6th demands this unprecedented decision.”
Jordan responded to her rejection of his appointment on his Twitter account.
“Speaker Pelosi just admitted the obvious, that the January 6th Select Committee is nothing more than a partisan political charade,” he said.
Speaker Pelosi just admitted the obvious, that the January 6th Select Committee is nothing more than a partisan political charade. https://t.co/wGRO9fV2kt
— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) July 21, 2021
The Republicans who were selected are loyal to Donald Trump, a contrast from the one Republican that Speaker Pelosi picked, Rep. Liz Cheney.
“You’ve got a mix from the entire conference, from people who objected, people who didn’t object. … You’ve got people who authored the commission,” the minority leader said. “So, you’ve got a microcosm of the conference.”
But Rep. Banks has been one of the Republicans most against the idea of the committee.
“Make no mistake, Nancy Pelosi created this committee solely to malign conservatives and to justify the Left’s authoritarian agenda,” he said.
“I have accepted Leader McCarthy’s appointment to this committee because we need leaders who will force the Democrats and the media to answer questions so far ignored. Among them, why was the Capitol unprepared and vulnerable to attack on January 6?” the representative said.
“I will do everything possible to give the American people the facts about the lead up to January 6, the riot that day, and the responses from Capitol leadership and the Biden administration,” he said.
Nehls said that he believes his experience as a former sheriff and military officer was a reason that McCarthy picked him.
“I’ve been a law enforcement officer 30 years as a sheriff for eight years so I just think it’s, you know, maybe he looked at those skill sets,” he said. “It’s an honor and a privilege to be able to serve at the leader’s request and I’m going to the best job I can.”