Democrats Make Cheney Vice Chair of Jan. 6 Panel

There's a movement to oust her, along with Adam Kinzinger, from the GOP conference
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 2, 2021 3:50 PM CDT
Democrats Make Cheney Vice Chair of Jan. 6 Panel
Rep. Liz Cheney, center, speaks to reporters last month after the first hearing of the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

House Democrats have promoted Republican Rep. Liz Cheney to vice chairwoman of a committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, placing her in a leadership spot on the panel as some Republicans are threatening to oust her from the GOP conference for participating. Cheney, a fierce critic of former President Trump, has remained defiant in the face of criticism from her own party, the AP reports. She insists that Congress must probe the Capitol attack, in which hundreds of Trump's supporters violently pushed past police, broke into the building, and interrupted the certification of Joe Biden's presidential election victory.

"We owe it to the American people to investigate everything that led up to, and transpired on, Jan. 6," Cheney, R-Wyo., said in a statement as Democrats announced her promotion on Thursday. "We will not be deterred by threats or attempted obstruction, and we will not rest until our task is complete." Some Republicans also want to oust Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois from the GOP conference over his acceptance of a committee spot. A draft letter by Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs to Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy calls Cheney and Kinzinger "two spies for the Democrats" whom Republicans cannot trust to attend their private meetings.

Biggs, chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, is calling on the conference to change its rules to state that any Republican who accepts a committee assignment or serves on a committee without a recommendation from GOP leadership "shall immediately cease to be a Member of the Conference." McCarthy's office did not respond to a request for comment about Biggs' proposal. Cheney has worked closely with Democrats in determining the direction of the probe, and the Democrats' statement praised her determination to get answers about the riot. The vice chair position usually is reserved for a member of the Democratic majority.

(Read more Liz Cheney stories.)

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