A group of House Republicans filed an ethics complaint Tuesday against a number of Democrats who made unsubstantiated claims that GOP members led “reconnaissance” tours before the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
The complaint, first obtained by the Daily Caller, alleged three specific violations and called for an investigation by the House Ethics Committee into the behavior of over two dozen Democrats. The complaint specifically mentioned a letter sent by New Jersey Rep. Mikie Sherrill and 33 other Democrats to the Capitol Police asking them to investigate unsubstantiated claims that members of Congress led “suspicious” groups through the Capitol Complex on a “reconnaissance” journey ahead of the riot.
The ethics complaint was sent by the top Republicans on the House Administration Committee, Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis, Georgia Rep. Barry Loudermilk and Wisconsin Rep. Bryan Steil.
The complaint also noted Sherrill’s Jan. 12 comments, when she told constituents in a Facebook video that she was worried some of her colleagues had provided “reconnaissance” tours to Capitol rioters.
Sherrill and 33 Democratic colleagues then wrote a letter Jan. 13 asking Capitol Police for more details about who was allowed into the Capitol days prior to Jan. 6.
“The visitors encountered by some of the Members of Congress on this letter appeared to be associated with the rally at the White House the following day,” the Democrats wrote in the letter, Politico reported. “Members of the group that attacked the Capitol seemed to have an unusually detailed knowledge of the layout of the Capitol Complex. The presence of these groups within the Capitol Complex was indeed suspicious.”
Capitol Police never responded to the claims, and Democrats have not been able to provide evidence to support them.
“Respondents claimed — without evidence — that Republican Members of Congress conducted these alleged tours in order to provide ‘unusually detailed knowledge of the layout of the Capitol Complex’ to ‘group[s] that left the White House and marched to the Capitol with the objective of preventing Congress from certifying our election’ on January 6, 2021,” the Republicans complaint reads.
“In an official appearance from her congressional office, which was broadcast on her official Facebook account, Rep. Sherrill doubled down on these unsubstantiated allegations, arguing for punishment for crimes that did not occur: ‘I also intend to see that . . . those Members of Congress who had groups coming through the Capitol that I saw on January 5th for reconnaissance for the next day—those Members of Congress who incited the violent crowd, those Members of Congress that attempted to help our president undermine our democracy—I’m going to see that they’re held accountable,'” the complaint continues.
READ THE COMPLAINT HERE:
Davis and House Republicans pressed the Department of Justice (DOJ) over the accusations in an April letter, asking officials to provide a “confidential briefing” about the status of their review of the claims that Republicans provided tours to Capitol rioters. (RELATED: Pelosi’s Office Fires Back At House Republicans Demanding Answers On Security Leading Up To Capitol Riot)
In February, Davis, House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Jim Jordan, House Oversight Committee Ranking Member James Comer and House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes sent a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi calling for details on what occurred with security before the Jan. 6 riot. (RELATED: ‘The Most Desperate Man In Washington’: Pelosi Spox Goes After Republican Congressman Who Alleged House Speaker Bypassed Security Screening)
Pelosi’s office responded to Fox News by putting blame on the Republican lawmakers and saying that safety is not their priority.
“Two of the four House Republican ranking members voted to overturn the results of a fair election, just hours after the Capitol was sacked by an insurrectionist, right-wing mob – a mob incited by Trump,” Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill, said. “A full 65% of House Republicans joined them in voting to undermine our democracy. All four ranking members also voted against holding Donald Trump accountable for inciting the mob.”
“Clearly, the security of our Capitol and democracy are not the priorities of these ranking members,” he continued. (RELATED: ‘No Insurrectionists Stormed Our Hallway’: Rep. Mace Slams Media Over Coverage Of Ocasio-Cortez’s Capitol Riot Story)
The Republican’s letter placed blame on Pelosi for not properly securing the Capitol, saying, “As you are aware, the speaker of the House is not only the leader of the majority party, but also has enormous institutional responsibilities… The speaker is responsible for all operational decisions made within the House.”
Capitol police have since increased security around the Capitol building and there are still National Guard troops on the ground. There was fencing and razor-wire installed around the complex after the Capitol riot, where acts of vandalism and violence postponed the Electoral College certification process and forced members of Congress to evacuate the building. (RELATED: ‘Transparently Security Theater’: Onlookers, Members Of Congress Call Bullsh*t On Capitol Police ‘Security Threat’)
Capitol police have said they are not investigating the claims by Democrats in Congress