The committee asked McCarthy to voluntarily provide information on topics including his conversations with then-President Donald Trump before, during and after the Capitol riots. On Thursday, McCarthy again criticized the committee at length — but he did so at times inaccurately.
This is a validation of three of his claims on Thursday.
McCarthy criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for playing politics with the committee, and claimed that “Nancy Pelosi decided, for the first time in history by any female president, to deny a minority the placement of her own people on a committee.”
McCarthy’s previous comments
Twice on Thursday, McCarthy tried to distance himself from his earlier comments about Trump and January 6th.
facts first: It is not true that McCarthy criticized “everyone” in his speech a year ago. Trump was the only politician he singled out for criticism. (He also criticized the Capitol and impeachment rioters.) While there is some possibility that McCarthy was really confused about the phone call the reporter asked him about on Thursday — though, as the reporter noted, that call was mentioned in Thompson. Letter to him on Wednesday – There was already a private conference call on January 11, 2021 in which he told House Republicans that Trump had acknowledged taking “some responsibility” for what happened on January 6.
What McCarthy said to House Republicans on that call, according to a source who was on the call and kept a record of:
“Let me be clear to you, I’ve been very clear to the president. He takes responsibility for his words and actions. Not if, what, or but. I asked him in person today if he took responsibility for what happened, if he felt bad about what happened. He told me he had some responsibility. for what happened. But he needs to admit it.”
Benny Thompson’s comment
McCarthy criticized Pelosi for her supposed appointment as “chairman who starts the committee by saying that the only person out of bounds is the speaker.”
facts first: This is misleading. The committee’s chair, Democratic Representative Benny Thompson of Mississippi, did not say Pelosi was “the only person out of bounds” from the committee’s investigation. Instead, in July 2021, Thompson expressed doubts that Pelosi’s actions were relevant to the commission’s mandate to consider the facts and circumstances surrounding the Capitol attack. Thompson did not go so far as to state that Pelosi was outside the scope of the investigation, and certainly did not say that she was the only person who was off limits.
“We haven’t seen him yet,” Thompson explained that he was not making any confirmed statements.