Stefanik Criticizes Jan. 6 Committee for Keeping Pelosi ‘Off-Limits’ From Probe

By Frank Fang
Frank Fang
Frank Fang
Frank Fang is a Taiwan-based journalist. He covers U.S., China, and Taiwan news. He holds a master's degree in materials science from Tsinghua University in Taiwan.
July 18, 2022Updated: July 19, 2022

House Republican Conference Chairwoman Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) is questioning why Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), chairman of the Jan. 6 select committee, is keeping House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) “off-limits” from the committee’s scrutiny of the events that led to the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

“You have only one office that’s off-limits to investigation and that office is Nancy Pelosi’s office,” Stefanik, the chamber’s No. 3 Republican, told Fox News’ “Life, Liberty and Levin” on July 16.

“Bennie Thompson said at the start of this witch hunt that everything is fair game,” she added, “except for the speaker of the House’s office.”

In October 2021, Thompson told CNN that “nobody is off-limits” from the committee’s investigation, including former President Donald Trump.

“We know that the speaker’s office was made aware of potential threats, potential violence that day. They failed to do their job to ensure the Capitol Police had the support they needed to secure the Capitol,” Stefanik said. “And they have not turned over the communication with the sergeant-at-arms’s office.”

January 6 hearing
Chairman and Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) arrives for a hearing on “the January 6th Investigation” on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 12, 2022. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)

Pelosi is facing questions about claims that she rejected a preemptive National Guard presence ahead of a Trump rally on Jan. 6, 2021. According to former U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, he requested that the National Guard be brought in to ensure that the Jan. 6 rally went smoothly. However, Sund claims that Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving, overseen by Pelosi, rejected the request, citing concerns over the “optics” of deploying Guard personnel in the city.

Sund’s requests were eventually denied or postponed six times, according to his interview with The Washington Post.

“The American people deserve to have that information,” Stefanik said.

She added the Jan. 6 committee is “a waste of taxpayer dollars.”

“It’s not dealing with the crises that are actually impacting and hurting the American people resulting from Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi’s failed policies,” she said.

The Jan. 6 committee consists of seven Democrats and two Republicans, all of whom voted to impeach Trump. Last year, GOP House Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) withdrew all of his picks for the committee after Pelosi rejected two of his selections, Reps. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). Pelosi then picked Reps. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) and Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) to sit on the Democratic-dominated panel.

In June, Trump told Punchbowl News that it’s “not even a question” that McCarthy should have put Republican lawmakers on the panel.

“Well, I think in retrospect, I think it would have been very smart to put [Republicans on the committee], and again, I wasn’t involved in it from a standpoint so I never looked at it too closely. But I think it would have been good if we had representation,” he said.

Epoch Times Photo
Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a “Save America” in Anchorage, Alaska, on July 9, 2022. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

Trump added that it “would’ve been great” if Banks and Jordan were on the panel.

“But when Pelosi wrongfully didn’t allow them, we should’ve picked other people,” Trump said. “We have a lot of good people in the Republican Party.”

Stefanik said at a press conference in June that the Jan. 6 committee “is not about seeking the truth.”

“It is a smear campaign against President Donald Trump, against Republican members of Congress, and against Trump voters across this country,” she said.

Also in June, Banks took to Twitter to warn that the committee was “NEVER about addressing security failures at the Capitol or ensuring something like Jan. 6 never happens again.

“Has ALWAYS been a witch hunt and a Trojan horse effort to advance radical left-wing agenda like abolishing Electoral College,” he added. “Don’t be fooled!”