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JOHN KATKO


House votes to establish a Jan. 6 commission

With a vote of 252-175, the House on Wednesday approved the creation of an independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection. There were 35 Republicans who voted in favor of the bill, bucking calls from former President Donald Trump to reject the formation of a commission. During the insurrection, a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol, with some beating police officers, breaking windows, and stealing items from offices. Before the vote, Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) said the riot will "haunt this institution for a long, long time," and must be investigated. Rep. John Katko (R-N.Y.) agreed. "This is about facts — it's not partisan politics," Katko said. "The American people and the Capitol Police deserve answers and action as soon as possible to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again." Based on the panel put together after the 9/11 attacks, the 10-member commission would be evenly split between Democrats and Republicans and tasked with figuring out how to best secure the Capitol and prevent another insurrection from taking place. The legislation now heads to the Senate, where Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has called it "slanted and unbalanced" in favor of Democrats. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Republicans are "caving" to Trump, and he will force a vote on the bill. More stories from theweek.comStephen Breyer is delusional about the Supreme CourtMarjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz are more popular among GOP voters than Liz CheneyThe COVID lab-leak debate is asking the wrong question

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McConnell formally announces opposition to Jan. 6 commission

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) publicly announced his opposition Wednesday to a 9/11-style commission to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, after informing Republican colleagues at a closed-door lunch on Tuesday. Why it matters: The House is set to vote Wednesday on creating the bipartisan commission, also opposed by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), that would investigate the "facts and circumstances" of the Capitol attack led largely by supporters of former President Trump.Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.Between the lines, via Axios' Alayna Treene: Most Republican members are wary of the commission and want to reframe the narrative away from the insurrection.There's also concerns it might alienate members of the GOP base, as well as Trump — who was impeached by the House for inciting the riot.What he's saying: "After careful consideration, I've made the decision to oppose the House Democrats' slanted and unbalanced proposal for another commission to study the events of January the 6th," McConnell said on the Senate floor."Federal law enforcement have made at least 445 arrests and counting relating to crimes committed that day. Hundreds of those people have been charged. Law enforcement investigations are ongoing and federal authorities say they expect to arrest at least 100 or so more." "Bipartisan investigations are also underway and have been for months at the committee level here in the Senate. So there is, has been, and there will continue to be, no shortage — no shortage — of robust investigations by two separate branches of the federal government." "The facts have come out and they'll continue to come out. What is clear is that House Democrats have handled this proposal in partisan bad faith going right back to the beginning."More from Axios: Sign up to get the latest market trends with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free

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Kevin McCarthy and Trump are scrambling to quash GOP support for bipartisan Jan. 6 commission

The House on Wednesday will likely approve the formation of an independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 siege of the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump. The commission's fate in the Senate rests on whether 10 Republicans support the bipartisan legislation, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) surprised many observers Tuesday when he left the door open to backing the commission. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy spent Tuesday scrambling to keep the number of Republicans voting yes Wednesday to a bare minimum. He stated his own opposition earlier in the day, "raising some eyebrows in the GOP conference after Democrats conceded to McCarthy on nearly all of his top demands on the commission," The Washington Post reports. On Tuesday night, he officially urged his GOP colleagues to vote no, Politico says, but "a last-minute surge of GOP interest" in the commission is dashing his hopes of party unity. "The genie is out of the bottle, and people are trying to put it back in," one GOP lawmaker told Politico. McCarthy had deputized Rep. John Katko (R-N.Y.), the top Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, to negotiate a bill on his behalf, and his push to sink Katko's deal "has upset several members, who feel McCarthy hung Katko out to dry and now feel even more inclined to rally around Katko and his commission proposal," Politico reports. "In a sign of momentum, the bipartisan House Problem Solvers Caucus, of which Katko is a member, formally voted to endorse the legislation Tuesday evening." On the other hand, Trump, who doesn't want an investigation into his own actions on and leading up to Jan. 6, slammed the legislation in a blog post Tuesday, possibly tipping other uncertain House Republicans into the no camp. McCarthy's opposition is seen as personal — he might be called as a witness over a phone call with Trump during the riot — and political, since he needs the support of anti-commission conservatives, and likely Trump, to keep his leadership position. A big bipartisan vote in the House would both increase the odds of passage in the Senate and also enrage Trump. More stories from theweek.comThe threat of civil war didn't end with the Trump presidencyBiden got to test-drive Ford's electric F-150 Lightning, and the Israel-Gaza flight wasn't going to spoil his rideThis is your brain on pandemic whiplash

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