House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) are attacking Democrats for "weaponizing" the Select Committee to investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the Capitol as a way to go after Republicans.
The committee is "packed" with partisans, and House Republican cooperation with the committee would "change the House forever," McCarthy and Jordan argued.
TOP MEMBERS OF CONGRESS OBJECT TO SUBPOENAS FROM JAN. 6 COMMITTEE
"With no effective check on its power, the Select Committee is trampling on fundamental Constitutional rights," McCarthy and Jordan wrote in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece on Thursday. "It is investigating the political speech of private citizens and demanding access to their personal records and private communications. When disputes over the requests arise, the Committee refuses to engage and seeks to punish. There is no presumption of innocence; instead Chairman Bennie Thompson declared citizens who invoke the Fifth Amendment are 'part and parcel guilty to what occurred.'"
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's rejection of Republican suggestions for committee members violated "more than 232 years of House precedent," and Democrats on the committee have "prejudged the outcome," cherry-picking data and working behind closed doors, they said. The Republicans also noted the few instances in which the committee was caught "deliberately altering documents," such as when it acknowledged altering messages between Jordan and former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows.
The committee's subpoenas of GOP members amount to "escalating its abusive tactics," they said.
"This attempt to coerce information from members of Congress about their official duties is a dangerous abuse of power, serves no legitimate legislative purpose, and eviscerates constitutional norms," they argued. "Just because members of Congress are responsible for writing the laws doesn't give a select few license to subvert them."
"The American people deserve better than Democrat weaponization of its majority rule," McCarthy and Jordan concluded.
The Jan. 6 committee subpoenaed McCarthy, Jordan, and Reps. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), Scott Perry (R-PA), and Mo Brooks (R-AL) on May 12 to discuss their alleged involvement with the Capitol riot. Biggs and Perry initially resisted, calling the committee an "illegitimate body" that is leading a "political witch hunt."
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McCarthy has consistently said he refuses to cooperate with the committee due to its "abuse of power."
The committee has run into additional barriers along the way, including a temporary block on its attempt to acquire the Republican National Committee's fundraising data. The committee has also not cooperated with requests from the Justice Department to provide transcripts of its interviews.