January 6 committee seeks interview with Kevin McCarthy

In September, the committee included Mr McCarthy on a list of hundreds of people whose records it has asked social media and telecommunications companies to keep for possible use in the investigation, which was reported earlier by CNN and confirmed by The New York Times. McCarthy’s spokesman Mark Bednar criticized the panel at the time as “politically motivated” and called its request “an authoritarian and unconstitutional attempt to dig into individuals’ call logs.”

In the days following the mob attack, Mr McCarthy adopted a different tone. He first condemned the violence and said Mr. Trump “bears responsibility” for the violence.

“What we saw last week was not American style,” McCarthy said on the House floor. “Neither does the rhetoric continue that Joe Biden is not the rightful president.”

But Mr. McCarthy eventually changed his stance, picking up Mr. Trump – who remains popular among the Republican base – and visiting him at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Fla., In late January.

“Your public statements regarding January 6 have changed dramatically since you first met Trump,” Mr. Thompson wrote in his letter. “At this meeting, or at any other time, did President Trump or his representatives discuss or suggest what you should say publicly?

In a recent interview, Rep. Liz Cheney, Republican from Wyoming and vice-chair of the committee, called the Mar-a-Lago meeting a turning point for Mr. McCarthy. He would later lead his party’s efforts to oust him from his leadership position for continuing to denounce Mr. Trump, his election lies and the complicity of many Republicans in their spread. And after initially saying he would support a bipartisan investigation into the Jan.6 attack, he backed down and vehemently opposed any congressional investigation.

“Looking back, by the time Chief McCarthy traveled to Mar-a-Lago in late January, his chosen route was pretty clear,” Ms. Cheney said. “It was a country that was not faithful to the Constitution. I believe we have a duty to our oath of office that requires you to put this above politics. “

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