Congressman Cleaver Supports Bipartisan National Commission to Investigate January 6 Insurrection

May 19, 2021
Press Release

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II (D-MO) voted in favor of H.R. 3233, the National Commission to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the United States Capitol Complex Act, which passed with bipartisan support by a vote of 252-175. The legislation was negotiated and supported by House Committee on Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and Ranking Member John Katko (R-NY) and modeled after the 9/11 Commission created following the terror attacks of September 11, 2001.

“What occurred on January 6th was an attack on American democracy itself,” said Congressman Cleaver. “As stewards of this democracy, for which millions of Americans have fought, marched, and died, it is absolutely critical that Congress allow an independent bipartisan commission to investigate the insurrection that put the Vice President, Members of Congress, Capitol Police, congressional staffers, and our democracy in grave danger. What happened on that day will reverberate in history for future generations to study, and we must ensure that they have the information necessary to understand the circumstances and causes to help prevent any such attack from occurring once again.”

Like the 9/11 Commission, this legislation would establish a 10-person bipartisan commission with five commissioners, including the Chair of the Commission, appointed by the Speaker of the House and the Majority Leader of the Senate and five commissioners, including the Vice Chair of the Commission, appointed by the Minority Leaders of the House and Senate. Commissioners must have significant expertise in the areas of law enforcement, civil rights, civil liberties, privacy, intelligence, and cybersecurity. Current government officers or employees are prohibited from appointment.

Like the 9/11 Commission, the Commission would be granted authority to issue subpoenas to secure information to carry out its investigation only upon agreement between the Chair and the Vice Chair or by a majority of Commission members, which would require bipartisan support.

The Commission will be charged with:

  1. Investigating and reporting upon the facts and causes of the January 6th attack on the Capitol as well as the influencing factors that may have provoked the attack on our democracy;
  2. Examining and evaluating evidence developed by relevant Federal, State, and local governments, in a manner that is respectful of ongoing investigations, regarding the facts and circumstances of the attack;
  3. Building upon other investigations regarding the attack and targeted violence and domestic terrorism related to such attack; and
  4. Reporting to the President and Congress regarding its findings, conclusions, and recommendations for corrective measures taken to prevent future acts of targeted violence and domestic terrorism, including against American democratic institutions, and improve the security posture of the United States Capitol Complex in a manner that preserves accessibility of the Capitol Complex for all Americans.

The Commission will be required to issue a final report by December 31, 2021.

 

Emanuel Cleaver, II is the U.S. Representative for Missouri's Fifth Congressional District, which includes Kansas City, Independence, Lee's Summit, Raytown, Grandview, Sugar Creek, Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Oak Grove, North Kansas City, Gladstone, Claycomo, and all of Ray, Lafayette, and Saline Counties. He is a member of the exclusive House Financial Services Committee; Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance; member of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress; member of the Committee on Homeland Security; and a Senior Whip of the Democratic Caucus. A high-resolution photo of Congressman Cleaver is avilable here.