McCarthy Tells Jan. 6 Panel to Preserve Records

Democratic chairman answers that the documents are going to be released anyway
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 1, 2022 5:35 PM CST
McCarthy Tells Jan. 6 Panel to Preserve Records
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy leaves the White House on Tuesday after a meeting with President Biden and congressional leaders.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the House minority leader who hopes to become speaker soon, has put the committee investigating the attack on the Capitol on notice that Republicans intend to review its work. McCarthy sent a letter on Wednesday to Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson, the panel's chairman, telling him that all records and transcripts produced during its term must be preserved so GOP members can look at them when they take control of the House next month, Politico reports. "The American people have a right to know that the allegations you have made are supported by the facts and to be able to view the transcripts," McCarthy wrote.

Thompson has already said the panel intends to release its report this month, now that it's interviewed its final witness. The release is to cover interviews of more than 1,000 witnesses. The documents will be "not just preserved, but made available to the public," Thompson said late Wednesday, per the Hill. McCarthy also said the Republicans' review will keep in mind the law that prohibits lying to the federal government; it wasn't clear what or whom he was referring to. He also said the GOP House will hold hearings to learn "why the Capitol complex was not secure" on Jan. 6, 2021.

Thompson pointed out that McCarthy could have put Republicans on the committee and testified himself. "He can read the report," Thompson said. "We won't have anything in our possession after Dec. 31." The committee is scheduled to discuss what to do about the five Republican lawmakers who didn't comply with subpoenas issued by the committee, including possibly referring the cases to the Justice Department for prosecution. McCarthy is one of them. "The subpoena I signed for him to come and testify before the committee will be part of the record," Thompson said. (More Kevin McCarthy stories.)

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