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McCarthy doubtful Republicans will participate in coronavirus select committee

McCarthy doubtful Republicans will participate in coronavirus select committee
© Greg Nash

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyConservative Club for Growth PAC comes out against Stefanik to replace Cheney The unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her  Kinzinger hits GOP on 'operation #coverupJan6' over Cheney ouster plot MORE (R-Calif.) said he hasn’t determined whether he will appoint any GOP lawmakers to the newly formed special committee overseeing coronavirus stimulus spending, telling reporters he will likely announce his decision next week. 

Republicans have been highly critical of the panel — which was recently approved along party lines — arguing it's politically motivated and unnecessary due to the other watchdog entities in place tasked with overseeing relief spending.

McCarthy said he sees it “as another impeachment committee” aimed at attacking the president, adding that while he supports the Congressional Oversight Commission established in the CARES Act — which he appointed Rep. French HillJames (French) French HillIn 'restoring America's soul,' Biden can become a hero for the persecuted Build back nuclear Republicans rally to keep Cheney in power MORE (R-Ark.) to serve on earlier this month — he doesn’t believe the select committee is intended to conduct bipartisan oversight. 

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“I was clear with the Speaker, I'm not convinced yet that we even participate. We are going to participate in everything that is fair in the process that has the Senate and has the House, it has an equal weighting, that's why we have French Hill that reports back to us,” he told reporters during a press call on Thursday.  

McCarthy’s comments come just one day after Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiFive takeaways on the House's return to budget earmarks Pelosi mocks House GOP looking for 'non-threatening female' to replace Liz Cheney Caitlyn Jenner: California needs a 'thoughtful disruptor' MORE (D-Calif.) announced six new Democratic members — Reps. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden address to Congress will dominate busy week Maxine Waters: Judge in Chauvin trial who criticized her was 'angry' GOP, Democrats grapple with post-Chauvin trial world MORE (Calif.), Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn MaloneyHuffPost reporter: DCCC will help Dems fend off progressive challengers to 'keep them happy' The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Chauvin conviction puts renewed focus on police reform Liberal advocacy group stirs debate, discomfort with primary challenges MORE (N.Y.), Nydia Velázquez (N.Y.), Bill FosterGeorge (Bill) William FosterLawmakers demand justice for Adam Toledo: 'His hands were up. He was unarmed' Lawmakers say manufacturers are in better position to handle future pandemics Lawmakers grill NSA on years-old breach in the wake of massive Russian hack MORE (Ill.), Jamie RaskinJamin (Jamie) Ben RaskinSix House Democrats ask Garland to review case of lawyer placed under house arrest over Chevron suit Democrats seek to keep spotlight on Capitol siege Congress and the administration cannot play games with the Congressional Review Act MORE (Md.) and Andy Kim (N.J.) — to a panel slated to be led by House Majority Whip James Clyburn (S.C.).

However, the California Republican argued the Speaker’s selections for the panel indicate it is “purely political.” 

“I'll make the decision whether we're going to participate probably next week. Because this is not viewed as something that's working for the accountability of the American public. It's viewed as purely a political operation that they chose at a time, they chose who the chair was to restructure before they even could lay out what the mission is, they voted on it without even giving the public what the mission of this will be,” he said. 

“They weighted it to be one-sided. They didn't allow the Senate in as well. She can argue anything she wants, but it's purely political, even from the people that she appointed. So I'll let you all know what my decision is next week.”

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Democrats have strongly denied that the creation of the committee is politically motivated, arguing it’s needed to prevent fraud and abuse following the passage of massive levels in emergency funding.

“We are hoping the Republican Leader will name his members soon. We have been in communication. I told him a couple days ago who I was going to be appointing so he can make his own judgments about the committee,” Pelosi told reporters on Wednesday.

“But we want it to be as nonpartisan as possible, and very much a part of doing the right thing for the American people," she added. "And nobody does that better than our distinguished Chair of the Select Committee on the Coronavirus, Mr. Whip, the distinguished gentleman from South Carolina, Mr. Clyburn.”