The House voted overwhelmingly Wednesday evening to set up a bipartisan 9/11-style commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol by a mob of Trump supporters, with dozens of Republicans breaking with their leadership by voting in favor of the measure.
What are the details?
In a 252 to 175 vote, the Democrat-controlled House passed the bill, with 35 GOP members voting “yes” despite Republican leadership urging them to vote against it, CNN reported. No Democrats voted against it.
All ten of the Republicans who voted for impeaching former President Donald Trump for allegedly inciting the riot voted in favor of setting up the commission, and they were joined by another 25 GOP members — 14 of whom are members of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, according to CBS News.
The day before, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) expressed his opposition to the deal, arguing that there are already “ongoing bipartisan investigations into all facets of the January 6 events” in the Senate.
Both McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) initially said Trump bore some responsibility for the attack on the Capitol despite voting against impeachment. In recent days, both came out against forming the commission.
The legislation now heads to the Senate where it faces “an uphill climb to 60 votes to defeat a filibuster” given McConnell’s opposition, NBC News reported.
Ahead of the vote on Wednesday, a letter was released on U.S. Capitol Police letterhead condemning McCarthy and McConnell for opposing the commission, wherein unnamed officers from the force purportedly wrote:
It is inconceivable that some of the Members we protect, would downplay the events of January 6th. Member safety was dependent upon the heroic actions of the USCP. It is a privileged assumption for Members to have the point of view that ‘It wasn’t that bad.’ That privilege exists because the brave men and women of the USCP protected you, the Members.”
But the USCP quickly issued a statement saying that the letter “is NOT an official USCP statement,” reiterating that the department “has no way of confirming it was even authored by USCP personnel” and that they do “NOT take positions on legislation.”
USCP does NOT take positions on legislation. https://t.co/LSu38jbIqd
— U.S. Capitol Police (@U.S. Capitol Police)1621459391.0
The communications director for South Carolina Rep. Nancy Mace (R) accused Democratic Rep. Jamie Raskin (Md.) of being behind the unsigned letter on USCP letterhead.
The aide tweeted, “Blasting out an anonymous statement on official Capitol Police letterhead condemning one party to Hill staff and reporters is atrociously manipulative. Raskin and his office should be ashamed.”
Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton promoted the unendorsed letter, too.
It’s worth reading this letter from members of the Capitol Police in full. They deserve answers on the events of Ja… https://t.co/8yoxi4AfVo
— Hillary Clinton (@Hillary Clinton)1621459808.0