House Republicans quietly put together a report to counter a release from the January 6 Committee that is expected to focus heavily on former President Donald Trump.
The group has been preparing a rebuttal that is likely to be more than 100 pages and focus on Capitol security, Axios reported on Sunday. Specifically, these investigators have been looking into law enforcement issues, including interviewing Capitol Police officers and intelligence gathering and dissemination by the FBI as they relate to the Capitol riot on January 6, 2021.
This GOP report also argues the select committee has “never dealt with serious issues” as their fixation with Trump is “all about political payback,” Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), the leader of the effort, told the outlet.
The House January 6 Committee is scheduled to hold its final meeting on Monday, when members will preview their report’s executive summary and eight chapters, Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) told reporters last week. At this final meeting, the panel is expected to vote on whether to ask the Justice Department to pursue criminal charges against Trump over the Capitol riot and efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Thompson said the final report, along with “attachments,” would be released on Wednesday. A Republican source told Axios that the so-called GOP shadow group is “prepared” to release its findings when the committee unveils its own report, which is expected to be around 1,000 pages. As reported by Politico, the January 6 Committee’s report will include legislative recommendations “to prevent another attack and other subversions of democracy” after 1,000 witness interviews, the collection of extensive amounts of records, and public hearings.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) picked five Republicans to be part of the counterinvestigation after he withdrew his five picks for the January 6 Committee in the summer of 2021 when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) refused to allow Banks and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) to become members. Instead, Pelosi picked Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), two fierce critics of Trump, to be part of the committee.
Looking ahead, Banks said his group would “dive into legislative and policy changes that could be made by the next speaker.” McCarthy, who is poised to become speaker next session if he rallies sufficient support as Republicans take control of the House, has already sent a letter to Thompson requesting the preservation of records and vowed to hold hearings on “why the Capitol complex was not secure.”