Congress voted to establish a select committee to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol Wednesday.
The vote passed with a slim margin of 222–190 after only two Republicans voted for the resolution, including ousted Republican conference chair Liz Cheney and anti-Trump firebrand Adam Kinzinger.
The select committee will have subpoena power over documents and testimony.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi will pick eight of the 13 members to the select committee and has hinted that she is considering asking a Republican. Pelosi will consult with the House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to appoint the remaining five members. Pelosi has said she can veto McCarthy’s recommendations.
Republicans called the vote political theater.
“The redundancy of another committee is not only unnecessary but it is a distraction,” said Rep. Beth Van Duyne of Texas. ”It’s a distraction meant to mask humanitarian failures at the border, massive spikes and crime in cities across the country, and absolute inept leadership in confronting our foreign adversaries.”
The vote came after Republicans in the Senate blocked an independent, bipartisan 9/11-style commission even after 35 House Republicans voted in favor of the resolution. In the mid-2000s, the bipartisan 9/11 commission released a book-length report on what preceded the events of that day. With the exception of Cheney and Kinzinger, the other Republicans who voted to impeach Trump after Jan. 6 voted against the select committee on Wednesday.
Several Capitol Police officers who fought the pro-Trump mob that attacked the Capitol were seated in the House gallery on Wednesday, including Harry Dunn, who has since spoken out about some of the racist abuse he experienced during the mob attack.
Rep. Jackie Speier, a Democrat, told BuzzFeed News that she’s planning to work on getting Capitol Police officers who struggled with mental health issues after Jan. 6 access to programs at Walter Reed, which she said has a “first-rate program” for the relevant care. Because the officers aren’t military, they normally would not be able to receive services there. Speier said she’d also engaged Cheney on the issue, which a spokesperson for Cheney confirmed.
During the vote, Cheney visited the gallery, as did a group of Democratic lawmakers — Reps. Dean Phillips, Josh Gottheimer, Bill Pascrell, and Eric Swalwell — where the mother of the late Brian Sicknick, the Capitol Police officer who died the day after engaging with rioters at the insurrection — was also seated.
“To them, I apologize they have to hear this debate,” Rep. Jim McGovern said, pointing to the gallery where the officers were seated.