U.S. House Approves Commission to Investigate Jan. 6 Capitol Riot

The United States House of Representatives approved a bill on May 19 to establish a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate the attack on the U.S. Capitol last Jan. 6.

The House passed the legislation with a vote of 252 to 175, with 35 Republicans joining all Democrats in voting in favor, defying the calls of their party leaders to oppose the measure.

The bill would create a commission whose members are divided between those appointed by Democrats and Republicans and are expected to have expertise in law enforcement, civil rights, and intelligence.

The bill appoints the commission to examine the facts and circumstances on the Capitol riot, including what provoked supporters of former President Donald Trump to stage the attack and what can be done to prevent another attack.

The bill would also grant the commission subpoena power to call witnesses and requires a report by Dec. 31.

“We need this commission because the American people must understand exactly what happened so we can all forge a more resilient democracy,” New Jersey Democratic Representative Mikie Sherrill told the lawmakers.

The bill now heads to the Senate where it faces an uncertain future as it is unclear if it will receive enough support from Republicans to advance.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell criticized the bill as “slanted and unbalanced,” a day after he told reporters that he was undecided about the proposal.

Trump described the plan as a “Democrat trap.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that the Republican leaders who opposed the bill were “afraid of the truth.”

“This is about facts, it’s not about partisan politics. We would’ve not gotten to this point if it was about partisan politics,” New York Republican Representative John Katko, who co-sponsored the bill, said ahead of the vote.

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