The Capitol Riot Commission Idea Is a Cynical Political Ploy

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

In their latest attempt to further exploit the Jan. 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol Building, Democrats and their Never Trump Republican allies seek to launch yet another investigation into the incident. However, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see this unnecessary proposal for what it is: Another attempt to keep the riot in the spotlight so they can use it to smear Republicans.

Last week House lawmakers hammered out a deal on establishing a bipartisan commission to further investigate the incident because apparently, the FBI investigation isn’t quite enough for their purposes. NPR reported:

Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, and Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y., the panel’s ranking member, will introduce legislation Friday to set up the commission.

Thompson said the attack was of a complex and national significance that demanded the need for an independent commission to investigate, and was pleased a deal was reached after months of intensive talks.

“The creation of this commission is our way of taking responsibility for protecting the U.S. Capitol. After all, the Capitol is not just a historic landmark, it is where our constituents come to see their democracy in action,” Thompson said. “We owe it to the Capitol Police and all who enter our citadel of democracy to investigate the attack.”

This commission, which would include a 9/11-style panel, would involve members with the Senate and House contributing five each. It would look into the “facts and circumstances of the January 6th attack on the Capitol as well as the influencing factors that may have provoked the attack on our democracy.”

If the Senate approves the measure, it will establish a commission with the authority to issue subpoenas to aid in its investigation, which will most definitely not be a contrived attempt to keep the Capitol riots in the news for political purposes. The panel would be required to issue a final report detailing the probe’s findings and recommendations by Dec. 31.

However, judging by how Senate Republicans are talking, it does not appear this particular proposal will become a reality. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) signaled that he would not support the measure, calling it “slanted and unbalanced.” The senator also argued that the current congressional investigations are sufficient to unearth the facts surrounding the incident.

“It’s not at all clear what new facts or additional investigation yet another commission could lay on top of the existing efforts by law enforcement and Congress,” McConnell said. Other GOP lawmakers have publicly rejected the idea of a 9/11-style commission.

But the fact that even anti-Trump members of the Senate indicate they will oppose the proposal further demonstrate that it could be dead on arrival once it gets to the upper chamber. Politico reported:

Even supporters of the commission concept like Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Mitt Romney (R-Utah), both of whom voted to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial, said they want reassurances or changes made to the House bill before they can guarantee their support.

Romney said he needed to make sure that the staff could not be selected by the Democratic majority. Collins expressed the same concern and added that she wants to ensure that the commission’s work finishes up this year, and not in 2022, an election year.

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE), who voted to convict former President Trump during the second impeachment sham, echoed Romney and Collins’ sentiments. He said: “A lot of the jabbering in the House — for and against this thing — seems like thinly-veiled midterm strategy. And, if that’s all this becomes, it’d be better for historians to take the long-view than for politicians to take the short-view.”

The bill needs at least ten votes from GOP senators to even allow debate and amendments. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer indicated that the Senate would vote on the measure but has not given a timeframe as to when this would occur. “The American people will see for themselves whether our Republican friends stand, on the side of the truth or on the side of Donald Trump’s big lie,” he said on Wednesday.

Republicans are right to question the proposal. As McConnell stated, there are already congressional investigations into the riots. Moreover, the FBI continues to look into the matter and is still arresting people involved in the fracas. It is clear that a commission would be akin to digging up Mr. Ed’s grave and striking his skeleton with a baseball bat.

But let’s cut the crap, shall we? None of these people actually believes yet another probe is warranted. Between the bureau and ongoing congressional investigation, it seems clear that the rest of the facts will surface eventually.

Even Mr. Magoo could see this for what it is: Yet another attempt to keep the Jan. 6 riots front and center. It is the same reason they insist on keeping National Guard troops near the Capitol. The objective is to continually remind the public of what happened at the beginning of the year and to give Democrats a way to continue exploiting the matter to smear Republicans and conservatives.

The Democrats, activist media, and Never Trump Republicans are doing everything possible to minimize Trump’s influence along with that of his supporters. The Capitol riots have been one of their favored weapons over the past five months. Hopefully, sane Republicans in the Senate will ensure this politically motivated farce never sees the light of day.