House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), is doubling down on her calls for a 9/11-style commission on the January 6 insurrectionist attack on the Capitol, following the impeachment and
acquittal GQP jury nullification of former President Donald Trump in the Senate over the weekend.
Pelosi had first suggested the creation of such a commission two weeks ago.
The Washington Post reports, Pelosi says there will be a 9/11 Commission-style panel to examine Jan. 6 Capitol riot:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Monday that the House would move to establish an independent commission to investigate what led to a mob storming the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 — one similar to the body that studied the 9/11 attacks for 15 months before issuing a sweeping 585-page report.
Two days after former president Donald Trump was acquitted (sic) by the Senate of inciting the deadly attack, Pelosi (D-Calif.) signaled in a letter to Democratic colleagues that the House would soon consider legislation to form a commission to “investigate and report” on the attack and interference in election proceedings, as well as an appropriation to pay for enhanced security features on the Capitol grounds.
Retired Army Gen. Russel Honoré, who was tapped by Pelosi to assess security after the attack, indicated in his “interim reporting” the necessity for improved safety measures, Pelosi said.
“It is clear from his findings and from the impeachment trial that we must get to the truth of how this happened,” she wrote.
Pelosi’s letter also arrived as multiple congressional committees are in the process of scheduling hearings in which they will question the heads of agencies involved in preparing for and responding to the attack.
Supporters of the commission say such an initiative will have broader authority than those committees to pursue testimony from those in Trump’s orbit — voices that were not part of the impeachment inquiry. The commission will not be under the time constraints of those committee investigations as it produces its findings.
Lawmakers in both parties speaking on Sunday news shows endorsed the idea for an independent investigation modeled after the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, established in 2002 by Congress and President George W. Bush, which published a report with recommendations to guard against future attacks.
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Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.), a House impeachment manager, who spoke on “This Week,” alluded to the partisanship of Saturday’s vote, saying a commission could avoid political infighting.
“Of course, there must be a full commission, an impartial commission, not guided by politics, but filled with people who would stand up to the courage of their conviction, like Dr. Cassidy,” she said.
On Monday, House impeachment manager Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) added that lawmakers like Sens. Lindsey Graham and Mitch McConnell should be barred from sitting on the commission to investigate the January 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol. Impeachment Manager Says McConnell And Graham Should Be Barred From Capitol Riot Commission:
During an interview with MSNBC’s Joy Reid, Rep. Dean said while she isn’t certain how the commission will be assembled, lawmakers who let Donald Trump get away with inciting the deadly insurrection should have no part in it.
Impeachment manager Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) says GOP lawmakers like Lindsey Graham and Mitch McConnell should have no role in the commission to investigate the Jan. 6 MAGA attack. pic.twitter.com/I70GGSP3IR
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) February 16, 2021
Rep. Dean said:
I don’t know how this commission will be set up, but certainly I don’t think somebody like Lindsey Graham, who has spoken out of both sides of his mouth, disgracefully so, should be anywhere near this commission. Lindsey Graham sat there, I was there. I made eye contact with the senator as we made our case. I’m very proud to have been a part of that impeachment team. And we gave the American people and the senators in the room who were witness and victim in that very crime scene, the facts that we could, that we knew at the moment, that were overwhelming and damning and clear and certain. So, folks like Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell should not sit on the commission. You know, I was struck, because I was there for the vote. I waited and stood in the back of the chamber as each senator stands and announces his or her verdict, literally stands. Lindsey Graham barely stood to say not guilty. Mitch McConnell stood to say not guilty and then what did Mitch McConnell do within minutes? He stood again in that very same spot and he said there is no question that the president is practically and morally responsible for the insurrection, for the attack on the Capitol, on a coequal branch. He said it was a disgraceful, disgraceful dereliction of duty. You know what rang in my mind when he said a disgraceful dereliction of duty? I thought, Senator McConnell, yes you are talking about the president, but aren’t you also talking about yourself?
The Post continues:
For Democrats, the commission may aid in holding the former president accountable after the impeachment inquiry failed to convict Trump with inciting supporters during his Jan. 6 speech to stop the counting of votes for then-President-elect Joe Biden.
“There’s still more evidence that the American people need and deserve to hear and a 9/11 Commission is a way to make sure that we secure the Capitol going forward and that we lay bare the record of just how responsible and how abjectly violating of his constitutional oath President Trump really was,” Sen. Christopher A. Coons (D-Del.) said on “This Week.”
I would go Rep. Madeleine Dean one better: Any Republican (because they were all Republicans) who either voted not to certify the election results, or who voted against impeachment in the House or Senate are automatically disqualified from serving on the 1/6 Commission because they were either coconspirators, aiders and abettors, accessories, or accessories after the fact. An anti-democratic political party which has endorsed sedition and violent insurrection as a tactic to maintain its minority control over the government has forfeited any right to serve on the 1/6 Commission. They are the problem, not part of the solution. America does not negotiate with terrorists. How Republicans will try to cripple the commission investigating the insurrection.
UPDATE: According to a Morning Consult/Politico poll conducted at the conclusion of the Senate’s weeklong trial, 46 percent of Republican voters blamed President Joe Biden for the riot, and 58 percent of Republican voters blamed congressional Democrats for the riot. This Soviet-style revisionist history, and completely bonkers delusion cannot be allowed to undermine the 1/6 Commission.
The 1/6 Commission will require legislation and will likely tee up partisan infighting as Republicans attempt to disappear 1/6 down the memory hole:
Pelosi’s letter to colleagues came several hours after four House Republicans sent a letter to Pelosi suggesting she may be responsible for the delay in the deployment of National Guard troops ahead of and during the insurrection. The letter did not mention Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who on Jan. 6 was still the Senate majority leader and would have also had a say in the Capitol’s security posture.
FactCheck.org has a Timeline of National Guard Deployment to Capitol (excerpt):
The D.C. National Guard reports to the president.
In a recorded video the following day, President Donald Trump claimed that he “immediately deployed the National Guard and federal law enforcement to secure the building and expel the intruders.” But Trump’s claim that he acted quickly is contradicted by news reports citing unnamed sources who say the president initially resisted efforts to bring in the National Guard at the outset of the Capitol riot.
The New York Times, citing unnamed Defense Department officials, said it was Vice President Mike Pence, not Trump, who approved deployment of the D.C. National Guard that afternoon. [On what authority? Was Mike Pence acting president at this point? This question remains unanswered.] The Times also cited a “person with knowledge of the events” who said Trump “initially rebuffed and resisted requests to mobilize the National Guard “and that the “mobilization was initiated with the help of Pat A. Cipollone, the White House counsel, among other officials.”
CNN also reported that Trump “initially resisted” deploying the guard, according to an unnamed “source familiar” with the decision to call in the National Guard.
The Fact Check goes on to say “the Capitol Police Board denied the [January 4 request to declare a state of emergency and authorize a request to secure National Guard support], but encouraged Chief Sund to contact the DC National Guard to determine how many Guardsman could be sent to the Capitol on short notice, which he did.” The Capitol Police Board has three voting members: the House and Senate sergeants-at-arms and the architect of the Capitol.
An AP Fact Check refutes this Republican smear: Speaker Pelosi does not oversee day-to-day operations of the Capitol Police. Posts falsely cite Pelosi as responsible for security during Capitol insurrection:
Many of the posts falsely claiming Pelosi was responsible as leader of the House were promoted by accounts showing support for President Donald Trump.
Capitol Police are responsible for security on the grounds of the Capitol and protecting Congress, along with the House and Senate sergeants-at-arms.
“No one person oversees USCP — the oversight apparatus includes representation from the Architect of the Capitol, the House and Senate Sergeants at Arms, as well as committees from both Houses of Congress,” Bee Barnett, director of communications and programs for the U.S. Capitol Historical Society, said in an email.
While the Capitol Police budget is approved by both chambers of Congress, Pelosi does not control day-to-day operations or officer assignments.
“Five weeks have passed since the January 6th attack on the Capitol building, and many important questions about your responsibility for the security of the Capitol remain unanswered,” their letter reads. [What about Mitch?]
Drew Hammill, Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff, called the Republicans’ letter a “transparently partisan attempt to lay blame on the Speaker.”
“The Speaker has and will continue to take action to ensure accountability and enhance the security of the Capitol,” he said in a statement. “Following the insurrection, the House Sergeant at Arms, the Senate Sergeant at Arms and the Chief of the Capitol Police were removed from their positions. It is the job of the Capitol Police Board, on which these three individuals sat, to properly plan and prepare for security threats facing the U.S. Capitol.”
[F]ollowing the attack on the Capitol, heightened security measures were deployed around the complex, including the requirement of members to walk through metal detectors and various forms of fencing secured around the Capitol’s perimeter.
To which always hypocritical Republicans have objected. Republicans Lash Out Against New Security Measures At The Capitol.