Washington, D.C. – Congressman Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives today about how H.Res. 503 - Establishing the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol, will create further partisan division rather than address the security failures of January 6, 2021.
As prepared for delivery:
"This resolution establishes a select committee to investigate the January 6th attack on the Capitol. After Speaker Pelosi’s first attempt at a commission failed to pass the Senate, she is now pushing a resolution to create what will be a very partisan select committee.
"The outcome of this investigation has already been written. Democrats have been publicly excoriating President Trump for months. They claim we need to understand the root cause of what happened on January 6th, but they’ve already laid blame.
"I was concerned that the commission the Speaker previously attempted to create would have been very partisan in nature. That is why I, and many other Members of this body and the Senate, voted against that resolution.
"The Speaker attempted to establish what she claimed would be a non-partisan commission to investigate the events of January 6th, modeled after the nine-eleven commission. But there are some key differences between the two. The nine-eleven commission focused on a foreign attack on the homeland. The proposed January 6th commission would have focused on a purely domestic event. The fact pattern for these two events is different. For the nine-eleven commission, we did not know definitively at the outset who perpetrated that heinous attack. Unfortunately, Democrats have already laid blame for the January 6th attack before an investigative body has been established.
"The staff composition for the Speaker’s proposed January 6th commission mirrored that of the nine-eleven commission; however, the January 6th commission would have ultimately been one party investigating another. The biggest concern of Republicans is that only one staff would have served the entire January 6th commission. In an inherently partisan investigation, Congress should authorize two separate staffs to serve the members of each party.
"Whether or not you blame President Trump for the events of January 6th, the fact remains that the incident was a massive security failure. Why were our U.S. Capitol Police officers, who sacrifice every day to protect us, caught so unprepared? Why did the National Guard take so long to mobilize when the threat was clear? What was known by our intelligence agencies and the Sergeant at Arms in the days leading up to January 6th? These are the questions that need answering if we are truly focused on preventing another security failure.
"I am disappointed that Democrats remain fixated on laying blame rather than investigating how we can better prepare our U.S. Capitol Police, and other federal response forces, to face future threats."