Only Six

Last Friday, in a clear stand-off between Democrats and Republicans voting for an independent commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection at the Capitol, only six Republicans voted with Democrats supporting such a commission, 35 in favor to 54 against. Sixty votes were necessary for passage. Modeled after the 911 investigation, the commission would be composed of five Democrats and five Republicans.

Senators Bill Cassidy of Louisiana; Susan Collins of Maine; Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; Rob Portman of Ohio; Mitt Romney of Utah; and Ben Sasse of Nebraska all voted to advance the Bill.

Only six chose conscience over loyalty.

After Trump’s second impeachment trial ended in acquittal, then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell excoriated him on the floor of the Senate.

“There is no question, none that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the event of that day,” he said.

Other Republicans, clearly beholden to the former president, tenaciously stuck to more extreme views.

While 500 hundred people have been arrested for crimes on January 6, “Rep. Paul A. Gosar (R-Ariz.) accused the Justice Department of ‘harassing peaceful patriots across the country.’ ”

Rep. Andrew S. Clyde (R-Ga.) said, “Watching the TV footage of those who entered the Capitol and walked through Statuary Hall showed people in an orderly fashion staying between the stanchions and ropes, taking videos, pictures,” Clyde said. ‘You know, if you didn’t know the TV footage was a video from January the 6th, you would actually think it was a normal tourist visit.’ ”

These are the same Representatives and Senators who either sheltered in their offices during the attack or, like Vice-President Mike Pence, were escorted to a secure location inside the Capitol amid shouts of “Hang Mike Pence.”

In a statement, Gladys Sicknick, the mother of fallen Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick said, “Not having a January 6 Commission to look into exactly what occurred is a slap in the faces of all the officers who did their jobs that day. I suggest that all Congressmen and Senators who are against this Bill visit my son’s grave in Arlington National Cemetery and, while there, think about what their hurtful decisions will do to those officers who will be there for them going forward.

“Putting politics aside, wouldn’t they want to know the truth of what happened on January 6? If not, they do not deserve to have the jobs they were elected to do,” she added.

When will this poisoning of American Democracy end?

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