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AP Fact Check rates GOP claim Pelosi blocked National Guard on Jan. 6 'false'

The Hill logo The Hill 7/28/2021 Dominick Mastrangelo
Kevin McCarthy wearing a suit and tie: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (L) speaks alongside Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) at a news conference © Getty Images House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (L) speaks alongside Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) at a news conference

A recent fact check by The Associated Press found that an assertion being made by members of the House Republican Caucus that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was responsible for the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol due to security reasons is not true.

"As Speaker of the House, Pelosi does not direct the National Guard," the AP reported in its fact check. "Further, as the Capitol came under attack, she and the Senate Majority leader called for military assistance, including the National Guard."

As a House panel investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection questioned four members of law enforcement who responded to the attack on Tuesday, several members of the House GOP during media interviews attempted to pin the violence that broke out on Pelosi, saying the Capitol Complex was not properly secured.

"On Jan. 6 these brave officers were put into a vulnerable and impossible position because the leadership at the top failed," said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), whose appointment by McCarthy to the special committee was rejected by Pelosi, said GOPers are looking to launch their own investigation into the police response in the days leading up to and during the attack.

Pelosi did not want Jordan on the committee because she knew he would question her response to the attack, the Republican from Ohio said.

Video: Pelosi reviews GOP picks to investigate January 6 Capitol attack (CBS News)


"Why don't they want to answer the fundamental question, which is why wasn't there a better security posture on that day?" Jordan said.

Rep. Jim Banks (Ind.), another Republican who Pelosi rejected from the panel, suggested over the weekend Pelosi was responsible for the "breakdown of security" at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

"Due to the rules of the United States Capitol, the power structure of the Capitol, Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, has more control and authority and responsibility over the leadership of the Capitol Police than anyone else in the United States Capitol," Banks said.

Drew Hammill, a spokesperson for Pelosi, told the AP, "On January 6th, the Speaker, a target of an assassination attempt that day, was no more in charge of Capitol security than Mitch McConnell was. This is a clear attempt to whitewash what happened on January 6th and divert blame."

Hammill said after the insurrection that Pelosi was never informed of a request from the House Sergeant at Arms not to call the guard before the attack, as her GOP critics have claimed.

"Republicans have falsely laid the blame on Pelosi without mentioning that GOP Leader McConnell had similar authority over the security officials that day," the AP wrote in its fact check. "But there is no evidence that either was involved in any effort to block the National Guard before or during the insurrection."


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