Last Updated on December 5, 2022
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has vowed to investigate the conduct of the partisan January 6 Congressional committee, though his past statements have led critics to question his commitment. In the immediate aftermath of the January 6 Capitol protests, McCarthy echoed leftist talking points by saying that then-President Trump “bears responsibility” for any violence that took place. Around that same time, McCarthy was caught on an audio recording saying that he would advise Trump to resign.
“Let me be clear, last week’s violent attack on the Capitol was un-democratic, un-American, and criminal. Violence is never a legitimate form of protest…. Yet the violent mob that descended upon this body was neither peaceful nor democratic,” McCarthy said on the House floor on January 13.
“The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters,” McCarthy went on to say on the House floor. “He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding. These facts require immediate action by President Trump.”
Despite McCarthy’s assertions, President Trump told his supporters to “peacefully” protest outside the Capitol Building during his speech just before the disturbance. After the protesters — the majority of whom were entirely peaceful — entered the building, Trump immediately issued a video statement urging them to leave.
But the far-left was already moving forwards with their plans to impeach an outgoing president, an effort that nine House Republicans joined. While leftists were advancing a number of lies — including the thoroughly debunked claim that Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick was “beaten to death” with a fire extinguisher — McCarthy and other establishment played into the witch hunt and condemned Trump.
While McCarthy did not support the impeachment of Trump, though he did not rule out supporting a motion to censure the outgoing president.
McCarthy, who has backed Trump at every turn, now says "let's be clear — Joe Biden will be sworn in as president in one week because he was the election." pic.twitter.com/900ur0fD1J
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 13, 2021
“Some say the riots were caused by antifa. There is absolutely no evidence of that,” McCarthy said. “Conservatives should be the first to say so.”
Contrary to McCarthy’s assertion, a number of far-left agitators were arrested on January 6. The most notable was John “Jayden X” Sullivan, who participated in Antifa riots then turned up in the Capitol. Sullivan could be heard urging protesters towards violence and penetrated deep into the building, though he was never thrown in solitary confinement or sentenced to a lengthy prison term.
Sullivan is perhaps best known as the streamer who captured Ashli Babbitt’s murder.
In his comments, McCarthy stressed that Joe Biden was the “rightful” president and urged President Trump to call him and formally concede. “Let’s be clear, Joe Biden will be sworn in as president of the United States in one week because he won the election,” he said.
In April 2021, leaked audio revealed that McCarthy was planning on asking Trump to resign over the incident. “Again, the only discussion I would have with him is that I think this (impeachment) will pass, and it would be my recommendation you should resign,” McCarthy said, talking about a phone call he was planning on having with Trump.
The longtime GOP Congressional leader has claimed that he was merely running through different scenarios and that he never planned on telling Trump to resign.