WASHINGTON, D.C. – Utah Republican Senator Mike Lee is calling for an investigation into the defunct January 6 committee, alleging that lawmakers who served on the committee deliberately concealed certain footage from the Capitol riots. This comes as House Speaker Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, began releasing over 40,000 hours of footage captured during the events of January 6, 2021, when protesters breached the Capitol building in response to the 2020 election results.
Senator Lee took to social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, to question the integrity of former Republican representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois. Lee asked why these lawmakers never mentioned the released tapes, suggesting that they may have been too preoccupied with selectively leaking text messages from Republicans they sought to defeat. One of the videos that Lee shared allegedly showed Capitol police officers assisting rioters in entering the building.
Lee accused Cheney and Kinzinger, as well as the committee as a whole and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, of deliberately suppressing evidence. He wondered how much footage and other records may have been lost or intentionally destroyed. In response to a video shared by Cheney that portrayed confrontations between protesters and Capitol police, Lee noted that such scenes had been seen numerous times and emphasized the hidden content that he found concerning.
The GOP senator also questioned the use of taxpayer funds to support what he labeled a “sham” January 6 committee. He amplified a clip that depicted an officer inside the Capitol allegedly releasing an uncuffed protester who proceeded to exchange a fist bump with another officer nearby. Lee expressed surprise at the scene, stating that he had never witnessed such an occurrence during his time in the building.
Speaker Johnson, who is overseeing the release of the footage, declared that his aim was to provide transparency and enable millions of Americans, including criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and media outlets, to see the events of that day for themselves. He pledged to gradually release the bulk of the footage to the public, with some sensitive security details and blurred faces to protect against potential targeting or retaliation.
The footage is being made available through the House Administration Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight. Approximately 5% of the recordings will be withheld due to concerns about sensitive security information and certain architectural details of the Capitol building.
The call for an investigation into the actions of the House January 6 committee raises further questions about the handling and dissemination of footage and other evidence related to the events of January 6, 2021.