On a conference call Tuesday with the House Democratic caucus, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi floated four alternatives to the independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol that failed to pass the Senate last week, according to a source on the call.
One idea Pelosi raised was a select committee similar to the ones House Republicans used to probe the Benghazi attacks, which, unlike the commission, would be run by Democrats.
Pelosi also suggested an existing committee such as the Committee on Homeland Security, which has already held hearings on the attack, could take charge of the probe.
Pelosi said House committees could also simply continue to hold hearings and investigate the attack as they have done – though those have at times been used by Republicans as a platform to downplay the attack.
Echoing Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who said he reserves the right to bring the commission up for another vote, Pelosi said Democrats could give the upper chamber another shot at passing it.
Pelosi also ruled out a commission appointed by President Joe Biden – which would be limited in its funding and ability to compel witness testimony – as an unworkable solution.
“In light of the GOP’s cowardly filibuster of a bipartisan January 6th Commission, I urge President Biden to form and appoint a Presidential Commission to fully investigate the insurrection,” Rep. Gerry Connolly said in a statement on Friday after the bill failed in the Senate.
6. That’s the number of Senate Republicans who voted for the commission – after 35 House Republicans voted for it – far short of the 10 GOP votes needed for it to pass. In all, just 35 Senate Republicans were able to filibuster the bill.
What To Watch For
Pelosi emphasized that nothing is set in stone and that there will be continued dialogue with lawmakers to try to reach consensus on the way forward.