McCarthy says GOP will 'do our own hearings' as alternative to Pelosi's Jan. 6 select committee

The special committee on the Jan. 6 siege on the U.S. Capitol that Speaker Pelosi former meets Tuesday for the first time. 

Published: July 26, 2021 3:46pm

Updated: July 26, 2021 7:37pm

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Monday the three Republicans whom House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has allowed to serve on her Jan. 6 select committee won't participate and that congressional Republicans will hold their own hearings.

"Look, we're not going to sit back," McCarthy told Just the News at the White House where congressional leaders attended an event marking the 31st anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act with President Biden and Vice President Harris. "We'll do our own hearings as well." 

The select committee on the Jan. 6 siege on the U.S. Capitol meets Tuesday for the first time. 

McCarthy's decision to pull the three picks that Pelosi allowed follows her rejection of his two other choices for the panel – GOP Reps. Jim Banks, of Indiana, and Jim Jordan, of Ohio.

"We named five," the California Republican said when asked why he wouldn't let his three choices participate.

Pelosi, a California Democrat, has named to two Republicans to the committee, Reps. Liz Cheney, of Wyoming, and Adam Kinzinger, of Illinois, each outspoken critics of former President Trump, whom Democrats and others attempted to impeach on the argument he incited the Jan. 6 siege.

When McCarthy was asked whether he was considering taking action against Cheney or Kinzinger for joining the committee, he replied, "We'll see." 

Cheney and Kinzinger each voted in favor of impeaching Trump after the siege.

McCarthy lamented Monday that no other House speaker ever spiked members from a select committee.

"It just makes the whole committee a sham, so the outcome is predetermined. You won't get to the bottom of it," he said. "If you had the five Republicans on there, you'd be able to have questions asked to be able to have witnesses come in. But now it's just all predetermined. ... Nobody thinks this is fair."

McCarthy also said he has a lot of questions about the lack of security preparation leading up to siege, amid the argument Pelosi nixed Banks and Jordan because they would have pressed Pelosi about her possible culpability.

"There are a lot of people out there that are in authority saying that she [Pelosi] denied the National Guard from coming, that they called to offer it," he said. "If that was the case, I mean, the biggest question is going to be, 'Why were we ill-prepared?' "

He also suggested that perhaps Pelosi and others in charge on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 didn't OK help from the Guard because the optics would have been similar to those during the summer 2020 social justice demonstrations – when guard units were activated in U.S. cities to stop the associated rioting.

"Could any of those things that happened over the summer because of the image when they would complain about the riots and having National Guard here. Did any of that play into this?" McCarthy asked.

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