Problem Solvers Caucus backs Jan. 6 commission

The bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus announced Tuesday it will support a bill to form a 9/11-style commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection on Capitol Hill.

The support from the 58-member body, which is split evenly between Democrats and Republicans, comes as GOP House leaders voice opposition to the plan, saying it also needs to investigate other acts of political violence from conservatives and liberals.

The caucus did not explain the reasoning behind its endorsement in a press release announcing its support but said that the legislation had garnered the support of more than 75 percent of its members.

Still, the caucus’s statement ensures that the legislation will get at least some Republican support in the House as the bill divides the GOP.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) have both come out against the legislation, while several other House Republicans have said they’re on the fence.

The bill would create a commission of 10 members with expertise in law enforcement and national security. Each party would appoint five of the people, and membership would be limited to people who are not currently serving in government roles. The body would be expected to issue a final report by year’s end.

The makeup of the commission marks a compromise by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who had sought an 11-member body in which Democrats would choose seven panelists. However, Democrats would not budge on Republicans’ demands that the commission’s scope be expanded beyond the January insurrection.

Republican leaders initially were not whipping for or against the legislation but ended up urging their members to vote against the bill on Tuesday, seemingly undermining House Homeland Security Committee ranking member John Katko (R-N.Y.), a chief negotiator of the bill.

“While Ranking Member Katko negotiated in earnest to improve upon previous proposals, Speaker Pelosi delayed for months and prevented the inclusion of a wider investigatory scope, proving her main concern is politics over solutions,” said a notice to House GOP offices.

Updated at 9:20 p.m.

Tags John Katko Kevin McCarthy Nancy Pelosi Problem Solvers Caucus Steve Scalise

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