Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney went on news programs on Wednesday to address GOP House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s refusal to cooperate with the committee investigating the riot at the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021.
Cheney, just one of two Republicans on the committee, told CNN on Wednesday that “I wish that he were a brave and honorable man. He’s clearly trying to cover up what happened. He has an obligation to come forward and we’ll get to the truth.”
Cheney also did not rule out issuing a subpoena to McCarthy.
According to the Associated Press, McCarthy is refusing a request by the House panel investigating the U.S. Capitol insurrection to submit to an interview and turn over records pertaining to the deadly riot.
In a press release issued on Wednesday, he called the committee not legitimate and accused the panel of “abuse of power.”
McCarthy had initially criticized Trump’s actions after the 2020 election, saying he “bears responsibility” for the deadly January 6 attack, which remains the most serious domestic assault on the building in its history.
The night of the attack, McCarthy called it “the saddest day I have ever had” in Congress, even as he went on to join 138 other House Republicans in voting to reject election results.
The committee acknowledged the sensitive and unusual nature of its request as it proposed a meeting with McCarthy on either February 3 or 4. “The Select Committee has tremendous respect for the prerogatives of Congress and the privacy of its Members,” Thompson wrote. “At the same time, we have a solemn responsibility to investigate fully the facts and circumstances of these events.”
Democrats have been seeking more information about McCarthy’s communications with Trump since the former president’s second impeachment trial last year. At one point in the trial, Democrats said they would try and call Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., as a witness because she had described a potentially pivotal call between the two men after hearing an account from McCarthy.
Herrera Beutler’s statement said McCarthy told her he had asked Trump to publicly “call off the riot” and had said the violent mob was made up of Trump supporters, not far-left Antifa members, as Trump initially claimed.
She said in the statement, “That’s when, according to McCarthy, the president said, ‘Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are.’”