July 28, 2021

January 6 Committee

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“The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection held its first public hearing Tuesday, vowing to get to the bottom of the attack and recounting the horrific abuse police officers suffered when they fought off the mob.” USA Today

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From the Left

The left supports the committee, arguing that the events of January 6th were an attack on our democracy and must be thoroughly investigated.

“A sitting US president refused to accept his sound defeat in a presidential election, cast a malicious web of lies about fraud that did not take place and called a mob to Washington. Then he incited them with further lies, told them to ‘fight like Hell’ before they marched on Congress to block the certification of his successor's election victory. It was, for all intents and purposes, a coup attempt and made the United States look more like a failed state in the hands of a vengeful dictator trying to cling onto power rather than the global guarantor of democracy and peaceful transfers of power it set itself up to be…

“The atmosphere surrounding the committee would feel less fraught had Trump's threat to basic American democratic values faded -- as many hoped it would -- when he left power on January 20. But the ex-President has only escalated his claims that the election was stolen, convincing millions of his supporters that American democracy is corrupt…

His increasingly extreme behavior carries the possibility that the violence on January 6 may not be the end of it. In Arizona on Saturday for instance, Trump spewed lie after lie about the election, and warned that the midterms in 2022 and the presidential race in 2024 would also be corrupted if a supposed plot against him wasn't exposed.”
Stephen Collinson, CNN

“Republican office holders have claimed that the rioters were peaceful. D.C. police officer Michael Fanone described how ‘I was electrocuted again and again and again with a taser. I’m sure I was screaming, but I don’t think I could even hear my own voice.’ They have claimed the insurrectionists were mere tourists. Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell asked, ‘How do you call an attack on a police officer a ‘tour’ when you see my bleeding hands, when you see all the officers getting concussions, getting maimed, getting fingers shattered, eyes gouged?’…

“They have claimed that the insurrectionists were well-meaning patriots. Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn recounted how a woman in a pink MAGA shirt screamed at him, ‘You hear that, guys, this n----- voted for Joe Biden,’ eliciting cries of “Boo! F------ n-----!” from a crowd of about 20 people. Sgt. Gonell offered a list of deadly implements the crowd used against officers: ‘a baseball bat, a hockey stick, a rebar, a flagpole, including the American flag, pepper spray, bear spray.’ They have said the select committee is unnecessary, but the officers begged the panel to press hard for the truth.”
Editorial Board, Washington Post

Instead of the usual circus, Tuesday’s hearing was four consecutive hours of clean fact-finding and emotionally constructive first-person witnessing to the horrors of Jan. 6. This was possible only because [GOP Rep. Jim] Jordan (and to a lesser extent [Rep. Jim] Banks) was kept off of the panel…

“[House Minority Leader Kevin] McCarthy didn’t have to surrender his seats on the commission after Jordan was rejected. He did it because he wanted to portray the select committee as a partisan endeavor—even though Republicans voted down a nonpartisan committee and even though there are two Republicans on this panel—and the result is that House Democrats have their first chance at an actual fact-finding operation to uncover the truth about one of the worst high crimes of the Trump presidency.”
Jeremy Stahl, Slate

From the Right

The right is critical of the committee, arguing that Democrats are exaggerating the events of January 6th for political purposes.

The right is critical of the committee, arguing that Democrats are exaggerating the events of January 6th for political purposes.

Nancy Pelosi made a serious mistake [last week] by refusing to seat Jim Jordan (R., Ohio) and Jim Banks (R., Ind.) on the House committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot, prompting Kevin McCarthy to take his ball and go home…

“While her formal statement is somewhat vague, the Democrats are more or less arguing that Jordan and Banks are disqualified from sitting on this committee because they voted against certifying the 2020 election. That theory goes too far — while Donald Trump’s push against certification on January 6 was one of the elements of his conduct that led to the riot, it is overreaching to argue that anybody who voted that way (including a majority of the House Republican caucus) is effectively an accessory to the riot…

“If that is Pelosi’s position — and it is a popular one with some factions of the Beltway media — it demands that she stop treating the Republicans as a legitimate part of the House. That is not a sustainable position with the general public, and will be even more unsustainable if Republicans — as may well happen — regain the majority in the chamber next November.”
Dan McLaughlin, National Review

“Leadership in both parties talked plenty about the idea of following the 9/11 Commission as a model for this investigation, but left out one important detail. Not one member of that commission held public office at the time of their service on the panel. Leaders of both parties nominated former officials in whom they had enough trust, and who could be seen as willing to collaborate on a credible investigation…

“And that was for an investigation of an incident that didn’t directly involve Congress. In this case, it’s even more important to cut the material witnesses and their competing partisan objectives out of the loop. These are people who should be called to testify, not running the investigation

“This is why such investigations are rarely if ever conducted by insiders. Would we expect the Minneapolis police department to investigate itself in the wake of the George Floyd riots, for instance? Would anyone find the results of that investigation credible? Of course not. So why are Pelosi and McCarthy trying to convince us that this House has any credibility in running its own investigation, no matter the composition or membership of the panel?”
Ed Morrissey, Hot Air

“Looking back, what was Jan. 6 in reality? A huge pro-Trump demonstration of tens of thousands, out of which a mob of hundreds moved on the Capitol, broke police lines, assaulted cops, rampaged and disrupted an official proceeding. All in all, a shameful disgrace. But 1/6 was not 9/11 or Oklahoma City or Pearl Harbor or the Pulse nightclub or the Las Vegas massacre

“Why are Pelosi and the regime media doing everything to keep Jan. 6 alive? What are the stakes involved? As of today, Jan. 6 is the biggest and last best stick the Democrats have for retaining control of Congress in 2022. For if that election is not about the worst day for the GOP of the Trump years, it is going to be about the successes and failures of the first two Biden years…

“The Democratic establishment and its media arm have a vital interest in hyping Jan. 6 and not letting go of it. For Jan. 6, 2021, is their last best hope for holding power after Nov. 8, 2022.”
Pat Buchanan, Townhall

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