WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- The select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot subpoenaed House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy and four other lawmakers allied with former President Donald Trump.
- The other legislators to be issued subpoenas are Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Andy Biggs of Arizona, Mo Brooks of Alabama and Pennsylvania’s Scott Perry.
- McCarthy had previously refused the panel’s request for him to voluntarily cooperate with the investigation.
The Jan. 6 committee issued subpoenas to five top House Republicans, including Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
The House select committee, which is investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection, subpoenaed the five Republican members of Congress on Thursday to get their testimony about events surrounding the Capitol attack and efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.
The other four GOP lawmakers subpoenaed include Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Andy Biggs of Arizona, Mo Brooks of Alabama, and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania. In recent months, all five had rejected the panel’s voluntary requests for cooperation.
“Before we hold our hearings next month, we wished to provide members the opportunity to discuss these matters with the committee voluntarily,” Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said in a statement regarding the subpoenas.
“Regrettably, the individuals receiving subpoenas today have refused and we’re forced to take this step to help ensure the committee uncovers facts concerning January 6th. We urge our colleagues to comply with the law, do their patriotic duty, and cooperate with our investigation as hundreds of other witnesses have done,” Thompson wrote.
The committee chair released the letter to the media. Thompson said, in part, “The Select Committee has tremendous respect for the prerogatives of Congress and the privacy of its members. At the same time, we have a solemn responsibility to investigate fully the fact and circumstances of the violent attack on the United States Capitol and issues relating to the peaceful transfer of power.”
The subpoenas were issued after weeks of internal debate over whether to try to force Republicans to testify behind closed doors about their conversations with former President Donald Trump. They will be questioned about their involvement in the effort to overturn the election and contest the certification of the results.
The top House Republicans are unlikely to comply with the requests. Non-compliance could prompt a legal, and, at minimum, political, battle with McCarthy and the other lawmakers who are expected to be in the majority next year and in a position to seek retribution.