House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is accusing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of “playing politics” following her appointment of a prominent Trump critic to the special committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection.
McCarthy (R-Calif.) aired his grievances in a statement late Sunday after Pelosi (D-Calif.) tapped Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) to serve as the second Republican in the House-led probe of the deadly Capitol riot.
“Speaker Pelosi’s rejection of the Republican nominees to serve on the committee and self-appointment of members who share her pre-conceived narrative will not yield a serious investigation,” the top ranking House Republican said, referencing her rejection of Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Jim Banks (R-Ind.) to the committee and Kinzinger’s appointment.
He continued, “The Speaker has structured this select committee to satisfy her political objectives. She had months to work with Republicans on a reasonable and fair approach to get answers on the events and security failures surrounding January 6.
“Instead, she has played politics. Lost in much of the news coverage is the fact that the Senate has already conducted bipartisan investigations that should serve as a roadmap for the House.”
Pelosi said she rejected Banks and Jordan as contenders to sit on the Jan. 6 select committee because they were too partisan, noting previous statements they had made about the probe.
Jordan, the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, and Banks, the chairman of the Republican Study Committee, have remained two of Trump’s top defenders in Congress.
McCarthy ultimately opted to pull all five of his selections from serving on the panel, vowing for Republicans to launch their own investigation into the deadly riot instead.
On Sunday, with just Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) as the sole GOP member of the commission, Pelosi announced that she had also appointed Kinzinger.
McCarthy argued that the GOP’s “main focus” was on combating the damage caused by Democratic policies, referencing the recent spikes in crime in cities nationwide, securing the border and combating inflation.
“I think it’s a conference decision. The conference will look at it,” he added of possible retribution against Cheney and Kinzinger.
Cheney, whose political future is in limbo after losing her House leadership position for breaking with Trump after the riot, faces a growing list of primary challengers over her decision.
The former No. 3 House Republican and daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney went on to be replaced in her leadership post by Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY).
“Speaker Pelosi’s departure from this serious-minded approach has destroyed the select committee’s credibility. The U.S. Capitol and the men and women who protect it suffered a massive leadership failure. We must make sure that never happens again and that is what Republicans will be focused on,” McCarthy’s statement concluded.
Reps for Pelosi did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.