Washington, D.C. – This afternoon, Wyoming Congresswoman Liz Cheney (R-WY) spoke with reporters following Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) decision to withdraw Republican participation in the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol.
Watch her remarks here and see the transcript below:
REP. LIZ CHENEY: I want to take a minute to talk about the appointments to the January 6th Select Committee. The rhetoric that we have heard from the Minority Leader is disingenuous. The attack on this building on January 6th was the worst attack on this Capitol since 1814. It was an attack on our Constitution. We supported what would have been the very best option, which was a bipartisan independent commission. The Minority Leader opposed that, he lobbied against it in the Senate, and the Senate blocked it. The American people deserve to know what happened, the people who did this must be held accountable. There must be an investigation that is nonpartisan, that is sober, that is serious, that gets to the facts wherever they may lead. And at every opportunity, the Minority Leader has attempted to prevent the American people from understanding what happened – to block this investigation.
Today, the Speaker objected to two Republican members. She accepted three others. She objected to two, one of whom may well be a material witness to events that led to that day – that led to January 6th. The other, who disqualified himself by his comments in particular over the last 24 hours demonstrating that he is not taking this seriously. He is not dealing with the facts of this investigation, but rather viewed it as a political platform. This investigation must go forward. The idea that anybody would be playing politics with an attack on the United States Capitol is despicable and is disgraceful, and I am absolutely dedicated and committed to making sure that this investigation holds those accountable who did this and ensures that it never happens again. And the American people deserve that, and that is what we are going to do.
REPORTER:Do you think you can still get that nonpartisan investigation you want, given that no other Republican but yourself will participate?
REP. CHENEY: I am absolutely confident that we will have a nonpartisan investigation, that it will look at the facts, that it will go wherever the facts may lead. There are three members that the Minority Leader proposed that the Speaker did not object to. She has objected to two members, and the rhetoric around this from the Minority Leader and from those two members has been disgraceful. This must be an investigation that is focused on facts. And the idea that any of this has become politicized is really unworthy of the office that we all hold and unworthy of our Republic.
REPORTER: Did you personally urge the Speaker to take this step?
REP. CHENEY: I agree with what the Speaker has done.
REPORTER:And also, McCarthy, of course, wants to become Speaker next year. Do you think that he deserves to be Speaker in the aftermath of his actions here?
REP. CHENEY: I think that any person who would be third in line to the presidency must demonstrate a commitment to the Constitution and a commitment to the rule of law, and Minority Leader McCarthy has not done that.
REPORTER: Are there other Republicans that you or Speaker Pelosi believe should be part of this investigation? The other three you mentioned that she did not veto are not going to participate. Are there others — are there other colleagues you’ve spoken to?
REP. CHENEY: There are many Republicans, the vast majority of the Republicans, both in the House, as well as across the country, recognize and understand that this was an assault on our democracy, an assault on our Constitution, and that there must be a fact-based investigation so that this never happens again. We cannot allow those voices who are attempting to prevent the American people from getting the truth to prevail, and we certainly will not allow that.
REPORTER: Doesn’t this play right into Republican messaging that this committee was going to be partisan from the beginning?
REP. CHENEY: Absolutely not. This committee has been focused, and I am certainly focused on ensuring that we get to the facts. And in fact, there were thirty-five Republicans who supported an independent bipartisan commission, which, as I’ve said, would have been the far preferable way to go. Minority Leader McCarthy opposed that actively and aggressively, and he lobbied against it in the Senate, and the Senate blocked it. We must have this select committee investigation. This is our only option left, and people must be willing to put their oath to the Constitution above partisan politics and above party. And I am absolutely committed to doing that. And I’m committed to ensuring that this investigation be one that gets to the truth of what happened here on January 6th. Thank you.