Is McConnell right to oppose Insurrection Commission?


Fact Box

  • On Saturday, November 7, 2020, media channels like CNN, PBS, Fox News, and Facebook broadcasted that Biden won the election with 290 electoral votes against Trump’s 214 votes. 
  • Trump had previously refused to concede to Joe Biden, claiming he “will never give up” until he promised a “smooth, orderly, and seamless transition of power” on January 7, 2021.
  • Wednesday, January 6, 2021, Trump supporters rallied on the US Capitol “interrupting challenges to Biden Electoral College victory.” After chaos ensued, there were four fatalities, 52 arrests, and 14 police officers injured. 
  • Then-President Donald Trump was impeached on January 13, 2021, after allegedly provoking violence at Capitol Hill and later acquitted on February 13, 2021.
  • On Wednesday, May 19, 2021, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced his opposition to the bipartisan plan to launch a 9/11-styled commission investigating the January 6 insurrection. The bill needs ten Republican senators to vote with the majority of Democrats to become a law.

Heather (No)

McConnell should not be opposing the Insurrection Commission as a bi-partisan independent commission is necessary to reveal the truth of the facts around the January 6th insurrection. Such a necessary investigation will help ensure a future attack on democracy and all Americans never happens again. This commission would also differ from previous investigative efforts because it would be more comprehensive and effective in revealing the truth. By suddenly opposing this commission, McConnell is clearly being unduly pressured by Trump.

Despite earlier openness to a bi-partisan independent commission of this nature, McConnell and other Republicans quickly gave in to pressure from Trump when he urged them to oppose this commission and referred to it as a 'Democrat trap.' Trump is not the official leader of the Republican party anymore. Yet, the willingness of McConnell and others to still give in to his demands so quickly puts into serious question if they are representing the American people or are only really interested in protecting Trump. Schumer further emphasized this concern when he commented, 'The American people will see for themselves whether our Republican friends stand on the side of truth or on the side of Donald Trump.' There are Republicans who are in favor of this commission, including at least several dozen Republicans in the House, and McConnell should also respect their will. We the People deserve to have the truth of all of the facts that this Insurrection Commission could reveal without the unjust interference of McConnell or Trump.

Stephanie (Yes)

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is right to be wary of the proposed Insurrection Commission regarding the Capitol riot for numerous reasons. Firstly, as McConnell stated, the commission is likely to be 'slanted and unbalanced' due to Democrats being able to decide who will be on it.

He and other Republicans also have legitimate concerns to oppose a commission surrounding the January 6th event. Such as the fact that Democrats have widely ignored or outright encouraged (including Vice President Harris) the Black Lives Matter riots that caused immeasurable damage compared to that which occurred at the Capitol. As former President Donald Trump noted, it is absolutely unfair to devote so much attention to the Capitol riot when BLM/Antifa 'activists' destroyed entire cities with seemingly no consequences.

It is also undoubtedly extreme to create a modeled commission after the one designated for post-9/11 concerns when the two events are barely comparable. The Capitol attack was certainly not 'one of the darkest days in the history of our country' and, as McConnell stated, may 'result in duplicative efforts,' as there are already numerous ongoing investigations in place regarding the Capitol incident.

From another perspective, this commission may divide the country even further if approved, unlikely amounting to any resolution. It is clear by this point that Trump supporters fully believe that the election was stolen, and, given that it resulted in a presidential impeachment, the opposing side is obviously convinced otherwise. Appointing a commission is unlikely to sway either side and considering that the 9/11 Commission was virtually unsuccessful in convicting those responsible, a dedicated commission for this incident is unlikely to resolve this situation either.

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