Posted by on January 13, 2022 2:08 pm
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McCarthy digs in on defying Jan. 6 committee

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., speaks to reporters during his weekly press conference at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. McCarthy is refusing a request by the House panel investigating the U.S. Capitol insurrection to submit to an interview and turn over records pertaining to the deadly riot. McCarthy claims the investigation is not legitimate and accuses the panel of “abuse of power.” (AP Photo/Amanda Andrade-Rhoades) Amanda Andrade-Rhoades/AP

McCarthy digs in on defying Jan. 6 committee

Emily Brooks January 13, 01:49 PMJanuary 13, 01:49 PM

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy dug in on his refusal to cooperate voluntarily with the House select committee formed to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol riot as reporters peppered him with questions about his conversations with former President Donald Trump around that time.

“My conversation was very short, advising the president of what was happening here,” McCarthy said about his phone call with Trump as the riot unfolded. “There is nothing that I can provide the Jan. 6 committee for legislation that they’re moving forward. There is nothing in that realm. It is pure politics.”

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‘ABUSE OF POWER’: KEVIN MCCARTHY REFUSES TO COOPERATE WITH JAN. 6 COMMITTEE

The Democratic-controlled House riot panel sent a letter to the California Republican on Wednesday afternoon requesting he voluntarily appear before the committee. Topics the committee wanted to go over with McCarthy included his communications with Trump on the day of the riot and why he continued his objections to Electoral College results after the riot.

The letter cited a Politico report that asserted McCarthy told members on a Jan. 11, 2021, conference call that Trump accepted some responsibility for the riot. Asked about that on Thursday, McCarthy said: “I’m not sure what call you’re talking about.”

McCarthy addressed why he said in May 2021 that he would testify to a Jan. 6 committee — at that time, it was considered a bipartisan, bicameral commission — but declined to do so with the Democratic-controlled select committee.

“That was two months before Nancy Pelosi decided for the first time in history by any speaker to deny the minority to even put their individuals on a committee,” McCarthy said. “Never did I think a speaker would play such politics.”

Pelosi blocked McCarthy’s picks of Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan and Indiana Rep. Jim Banks from sitting on the committee last year. That prompted McCarthy to pull his other three appointments in protest unless all five were seated, leaving the committee with only Democratic-appointed members. Two of those, Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, are Republicans.

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The minority leader is the third Republican to decline the committee’s request for voluntary cooperation, with Jordan and Pennsylvania Rep. Scott Perry both declining similar requests.

The panel is considering whether it will take the unprecedented step of issuing subpoenas to sitting lawmakers who do not willingly cooperate with its investigation.

McCarthy did not answer a shouted question about whether he would appear before the committee if it issues a subpoena.

© 2022 Washington Examiner

Originally appeared at Washington Examiner

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