Rep. Adam Kinzinger
(R-Ill.) blasted House
Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy
(R-Calif.) on Sunday for “not telling the truth” about their party’s role in the deadly insurgent attack
on the United States Capitol
During an appearance on "Fox News Sunday
," Kinzinger told host Chris Wallace
that forming a commission
to investigate the Jan. 6 attack, similar to the commission formed after 9/11, is critical, and that McCarthy and other GOP
leaders' efforts to prevent its formation are reprehensible.
“What we need is a comprehensive look at what happened leading up to Jan. 6,” Kinzinger said, adding, “Who was talking to whom? What were the lies?”
“The American people
deserve the truth,” he continued, “and my party has said things like hugs and kisses, antifa and [Black Lives Matter
], anything but what it was, which was a Trump-inspired insurgency on Capitol Hill.”
McCarthy initially blamed then-President Donald Trump
for the Capitol attack, linking Trump's divisive rhetoric and lies about the election to the violence at the country's seat of government. McCarthy allegedly yelled at Trump over the phone as Trump's supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, telling Trump to call off the attack.
But, less than a month later, Trump appeared to be back in McCarthy's good graces: on Jan. 29, McCarthy met with Trump at Mar-a-Lago
to discuss how the GOP can retake the House in 2022.
Despite opposition from McCarthy and other top GOP members, the House voted Wednesday to create the commission to investigate the attack, with 35 Republicans
, including Kinzinger, joining Democrats
in support of the panel's formation.
The bipartisan vote sets up a showdown with the Senate
, where Republicans led by Sen. Mitch McConnell
(R-Ky.) may filibuster
the bill because the investigation
could be politically damaging to the GOP.
“I do believe Kevin has failed to tell the truth to Republicans and the American people,” Kinzinger said on Sunday, “and it pains me to say it. It's not like I enjoy standing up and saying it.”
He went on to say that some of the 74 million people who voted for Trump in the 2020 election
, particularly those who believe the election was rigged, were misled by their representatives.
“The people they trust have either been silent or have not told them the truth,” Kinzinger said. “That is where Kevin has failed, because he told the truth... then he went to Mar-a-Lago and said Donald Trump is the leader of the party. He is correct, Donald Trump is the leader of the party, but we need to tell people the truth.”
Some Republicans seeking to derail the commission's efforts have questioned its necessity in light of other investigations being conducted by federal law enforcement agencies and congressional committees. However, the 9/11 terrorist attacks were under investigation by law enforcement and congressional committees; this did not prevent Congress from establishing its commission.
There are still a number of major unanswered questions about the Jan. 6 attack, including what Trump did or did not do to quell the riot.
Kinzinger's entire interview with "Fox News Sunday" can be found below:
Visit foxnews.com to see the latest video.