GOP looks to Pelosi as party weighs response to Jan. 6 subpoenas

Several regular Republicans, possibly committee chairs and members of the party leadership, told CNN Friday that the January 6 committee’s subpoenas to House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy and four other Republicans, create a new standard they may eventually choose to repeat. In the likely majority of the Republican Party in the next Congress.

Top of the list: Pelosi, who Republicans say they plan to target via her communications regarding security matters in the lead-up to January 6 and as riots erupted in the Capitol.

“I’ll tell you the truth: Yes, I do,” Representative Paddy Carter, a Georgia Republican, said when asked if he thought Republicans should issue a subpoena for Pelosi. “This sets a precedent, and we are not going to lie down and let this happen. There are serious questions about her role on January 6 and what exactly she did and what she did not do. And we need to get to the bottom of that.”

Several other Republicans said on Friday that there was broad support within the convention for going after Pelosi.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a subpoena,” Republican Representative Brian Mast said.

Pelosi responded back.

“I’m not afraid of precedent,” the spokesperson told CNN on Friday. “We are looking for the truth, and we will not be cowardly about it.”

The retreat is the latest indication of the toxic relations that have plagued the room since the Capitol Rebellion, with Democrats saying their investigation is focused on getting to the roots of the attack on American democracy and Republicans eager to deflect blame. From former President Donald Trump and his supporters.

Since the attack, ordinary Democrats have refused to work with Republicans who voted to nullify the election results. The contempt between Pelosi and McCarthy is palpable. Tensions on the ground have risen, including on Thursday when McCarthy and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer — two men who usually maintain friendly relations — engaged in a tense interaction.

“I was talking to him about seeing if we can fix this issue,” Hoyer said, referring to a problem they had on the ground. His comment was that he had no intention of fixing any problems.

Moreover, Pelosi’s ruthless tactics in the majority — such as taking unprecedented steps to remove two controversial Republicans from their committee assignments — will almost certainly be repeated under the leadership of House Speaker McCarthy, who has already pledged to scrap commission assignments from several prominent Democrats afterward. . public.

And now with the committee seeking information from five Republicans – McCarthy, Representatives. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Andy Bigs of Arizona, Mo Brooks of Alabama and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania — about their conversations with Trump around the time of the Capitol attack, GOP lawmakers are signaling that they will not be shy about responding in kind.

Pelosi does not oversee the daily operations of the Capitol Police, but Republicans have focused on her role that day as they seek to build a counter-narrative about the deadly attack on the Capitol building caused by Trump supporters and the role. Trump played as well.

“Several independent fact-checkers have confirmed that Speaker Pelosi did not plan to assassinate her,” Pelosi’s spokesman Drew Hamill said Friday. “No matter the former president’s desperate lies, no spokesman was more responsible for the security of the U.S. Capitol that day than Mitch McConnell.”

However, Republicans say Pelosi should be the focus moving forward.

Republican Representative Jim Banks of Indiana, dismissed by Pelosi as one of McCarthy’s picks for the committee, said the select committee should call the spokeswoman to testify about the security preparations and the failure on Jan. 6.

“House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is the only person in the United States who has covered anything related to January 6th, so this is who should be subpoenaed,” Banks told reporters. “You should be at the top of the list.”

Banks, who chairs the conservative Republican Study Committee, declined to say whether Republicans should take the step if they were in power. “I’ll take that into account for our captain,” Banks said.

McCarthy declined to comment when asked about the matter several times on Friday.

Banks and Representative Rodney Davis of Illinois, the top Republican on the House Management Committee, worked behind the scenes of their own investigations that focused squarely on the Jan. 6 security failures. A sergeant at House’s in Arms reported on the decision-making process leading up to that day, among other things.

Davis previously told CNN that if he became president, he would have no problem issuing subpoenas for information about their investigation, whether it was for documents or testimony. On Friday, Davis reiterated that the investigation would be his “majority focus,” but avoided questions about whether he would use subpoena power to target Pelosi.

“I’d love to sit down and talk, but House Speaker Pelosi and President (Zoe) Lofgren clearly decided they didn’t really value my opinion,” Davis said. “Otherwise, the Select Committee Circus would be much different.”

Several Democrats indicated on Friday that they were not concerned about Republicans pursuing a similar tactic if they regain power.

“They will act irresponsibly no matter what,” said California Representative Adam Schiff, a Jan. 6 panel member and one of McCarthy’s top targets.

Schiff added: “If the Republicans take the majority, I worry more that they will succeed where they failed before and overturn the election. They have not shown any ability to govern responsibly. So, the subpoenas would be the least of anyone’s concern if Trump’s party takes over.”

And some Democrats said that if Republicans chose to ignore the January 6 committee subpoenas, they would set their own precedent that Democrats could choose to follow.

“The question is what precedent will they set by responding to these subpoenas?” asked Representative Jimmy Raskin, a Maryland Democrat who sits on the committee.

“So people asked, ‘Does this set a precedent for future congressional subpoenas?'” Raskin added. “If there are coups and rebellions, I think that happens.”

CNN’s Morgan Rimmer, Ryan Nobles and Annie Grayer contributed to this report.