Nancy Pelosi To Decide Soon On House Select Committee To Probe Capitol Riot

Republicans in the Senate blocked a bipartisan bill last month that would have created an independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection.
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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told Democrats on Tuesday that she will make a decision this week about creating a select committee to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Senate Republicans blocked bipartisan legislation last month that would have established an independent, 9/11-style commission to investigate the insurrection. Earlier reports said Pelosi told her colleagues that she had decided to form the select committee, but her office walked back those claims later Tuesday.

A House select committee is one of Congress’s most powerful investigative tools and would give lawmakers on the panel subpoena power to call witnesses.

Drew Hammill, Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff, said the lawmaker told Democrats on the party’s Steering and Policy Committee of her intentions but said she had yet to make a final decision.

“Her preference continues to be a bipartisan commission which Senate Republicans are blocking,” Hammill added on Twitter.

Pelosi stressed last week that the party would move forward with its efforts to investigate the attack in which a mob of Donald Trump supporters, inflamed by lies about the results of the 2020 presidential election, stormed the halls of Congress,

“We can’t wait any longer,” she told reporters at the time. “We will proceed.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has also expressed his support for the panel, saying last month that it is “better to investigate with a select committee than not investigate.”

Republicans have largely sought to move past the Jan. 6 insurrection, despite questions remaining about how it was organized, what role former President Trump played in the event and if law enforcement officials failed to uncover plans to storm the Capitol.

The GOP used the filibuster to block the independent commission and has leveraged the filibuster several times more in recent weeks to stymie Democrats, leaning on the 50-50 split in the Senate. On Tuesday, Republicans blocked an ambitious voting rights bill, known as the For the People Act, that would have strengthened the nation’s election process.

Moderate Democrats, namely Sens. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.), have vowed to uphold the filibuster, which effectively requires 60 votes — meaning 10 Republicans — to pass any legislation.

CLARIFICATION: An earlier version of this article said that Pelosi had reportedly decided to create a select committee on the Capitol riot. Her office later clarified that she plans to decide on the matter this week.

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