Scalise calls Bannon contempt vote a ‘distraction’ from Biden crises

Scalise calls Bannon contempt vote a ‘distraction’ from Biden crises
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House Minority Whip Steve Scalise on Wednesday described a House vote to hold Steve Bannon in contempt of Congress as a “distraction” from crises facing the Biden administration, such as inflation and supply chain issues.

The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol voted unanimously on Tuesday evening to hold Bannon, who was an adviser to former President Donald Trump, in criminal contempt of Congress after he refused to comply with its subpoena request.

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At a press conference, Scalise called the select committee a “partisan exercise” whose members shunned “a true working relationship” with Republicans when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected two of Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's picks for the committee. McCarthy later pulled his members from the select committee, but Pelosi added Republican Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger.

“They’re not trying to get at the truth, they want to just continue trying to create a distraction so they don’t have to talk about the crises they’ve created on every level,” Scalise said. “They don’t want to deal with inflation, they want to hope it goes away.”

“Ultimately, they’re going to be judged on how their policies affect regular people across America, and right now, it’s a devastating impact these far-left socialist items have had,” Scalise said.

Scalise said Republican members are “tired of the witch hunts and the games” and would rather focus on “policy.”

Upon the committee’s recommendation to hold Bannon in contempt, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced a Thursday vote to do so.

“We must get to the bottom of the January 6 attack, including what former President Trump knew and when, what decisions were made by the White House while the attack was underway, and if its perpetrators had any help or guidance from inside the building or from within the Trump Administration,” Hoyer said in a statement. “Mr. Bannon can and must help answer those questions so that the American people can learn the whole story. He owes it to his country to testify."

In remarks directed toward her Republican colleagues at the Tuesday hearing, Cheney asked them to “consider the fundamental questions of right and wrong here.”

“The American people must know what happened,” she said. “They must know the truth. All of us who are elected officials must do our duty to prevent the dismantling of the rule of law and to ensure nothing like that dark day in January ever happens again.”

Earlier in the hearing, Cheney said Bannon had “substantial advanced knowledge” of the events that took place on Jan. 6.

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During the press conference, Scalise also addressed an indictment of Republican Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, who allegedly made false statements to the FBI during its investigation into illegal campaign contributions. Scalise called Fortenberry “one of the most decent people that we serve with.” He added that Republican leadership will “work through” Fortenberry’s committee assignments, as GOP conference rules require a lawmaker under indictment to step down from those roles.

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Tags: News, Steve Scalise, Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, Liz Cheney, January 6, Joe Biden, Supply chain

Original Author: Kate Scanlon

Original Location: Scalise calls Bannon contempt vote a ‘distraction’ from Biden crises

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