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Schumer: Senate Report 'Strengthened Argument' For Commission On January 6
U.S. Senate

Schumer: Senate Report 'Strengthened Argument' For Commission On January 6

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said Tuesday that significant gaps in a report released earlier in the day on the January Capitol riot have “strengthened the argument” for a 9/11-style commission to investigate the events, which Senate Republicans have blocked.

“With the exception of a brief reference to former President Trump’s remarks at the ellipsis, Senate Republicans insisted that the report exclude anything having to do with the cause of the insurgency,” Schumer said.

“If anything,” he says, “the report has strengthened the case for an independent commission on January 6th.”

The bipartisan report, authored by the Senate’s Homeland Security and Rules committees, provided the most detailed account of the events of Jan. 6, but it fell short of answering key questions, such as why it took so long for authorities to mobilize. The report’s authors concluded that “no one could explain why [the D.C. National Guard] did not deploy until after 5:00 p.m.,” when a mob obliterated the city.

More detailed information about what law enforcement knew about the potential for violence that day from social media posts and maps of the Capitol complex's tunnel systems posted online is included in the report.

The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, among others, failed to fully comply with information requests, according to the report.

Schumer stated that he "reserves the right to bring legislation for an independent bipartisan commission to the Senate floor for another vote." He stated the same thing in a letter to colleagues shortly before Memorial Day, only noting that he would do so "at the appropriate time."

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) stated on Tuesday that he would continue to oppose the commission because he believed the information available at the time was adequate.

“Today’s report is one of many reasons I’m confident in the ability of the existing investigations to uncover all actionable facts about the events of January 6,” McConnell said, adding that “I’ll continue to support these efforts over any that seek to politicize the process, and I would urge my colleagues to do the same.”

Republicans, led by McConnell, successfully prevented the Senate from taking up House-passed legislation authorizing an independent commission last month, the first use of the filibuster in Biden's presidency, despite emotional pleas from some of the officers who fought back against the mob and while ignoring negotiations that had taken place between Republicans a month earlier.

The partisan move has increased pressure on Biden and Democratic leadership to end the filibuster, but advocates face an uphill battle, as one key holdout, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), reaffirmed his opposition to the anti-filibuster movement this week.

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