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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was noncommittal in approving of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s Republican picks for her Jan. 6 select committee, saying she will decide when she is “ready.”
“I’m not prepared to make a statement on that, but I’m considering his proposals,” Pelosi told CNN on Tuesday, the New York Post reported. “I want to be clear how people voted to affirm the election of Joe Biden is not a criterion for service.”
Among McCarthy’s five picks, three voted against certifying the Electoral College votes: Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks, R-Ind.; House Judiciary Ranking Member Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio; and Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Texas.
Banks is leading the GOP on the panel and will also be joined on the committee by House Administration Ranking Member Rodney Davis, R-Ill.; and Rep. Kelly Armstrong, R-N.D.
The committee, put in place by Pelosi after the Senate failed to pass the Jan. 6 Commission, will hold its first hearing next week, taking testimony from law enforcement officials who were assaulted by protesters.
McCarthy has been critical of the partisan bent on the committee to review the events of Jan. 6, and House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., questions Pelosi’s own handling of the security of the Capitol, potentially bringing some scrutiny on the originator of the panel.
Pelosi has permitted just five Republicans on the 12-member committee and has the authority to veto selections.
It is unlikely Pelosi is going to push forward a committee that brings her to account for shortfalls in Capitol security before the event and potential partisan motivations of overstocking the National Guard at the Capitol for months after the Jan. 6 storming by protesters.
“Let the members of the committee discuss that — one of many questions that’s unanswered and that is, at what level from the speaker’s office on down, that they reject the offer for help from the National Guard,” Scalise told reporters Tuesday.
Also, as former President Donald Trump has alluded to, the shooter of U.S. veteran Ashli Babbitt might have been a head of security for a prominent Democrat House member. Neither the shooter nor the speculated protectee has been publicly revealed – and the Biden Justice Department has dropped the investigation into any action against the shooter – but Trump noted the optics of a Democrat security official shooting an unarmed Republican protester are shaky at best.
Pelosi’s selections on the committee are not subject to scrutiny by the GOP, because she holds the authority there, too. House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., will chair the panel and be joined by: Reps. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif.; Pete Aguilar, D-Calif.; Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla.; Elaine Luria, D-Va.; and former House GOP leadership member Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., who is a staunch anti-Trump member who voted to impeach the former president after he left office.