Judicial Watch keeps up legal fight for government records on Capitol riot

Months after a deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, a lawsuit seeking government records related to the incident is still making its way through the court system — and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and other congressional leaders don’t seem to be budging.

In a Facebook post Thursday, Judicial Watch reiterated its dedication to uncovering the truth about the state of security at the Capitol on Jan. 6, when demonstrators interrupted proceedings to certify the results of the 2020 presidential race. The conservative government watchdog group first filed its suit to obtain “emails and videos concerning the riot” from U.S. Capitol Police back in February.

“What are Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer hiding?” Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton asked in a video statement published to Facebook on Thursday, referring to the House speaker and her counterpart in the Senate. Take a look:

“Our midterm message”

As Judicial Watch continues to wage the battle for information about the Capitol riot and potential security shortcomings in court, conservative lawmakers on the Hill have taken a more forward-thinking approach.

A Pelosi-backed measure to form an “independent commission” to investigate the unrest passed in the House earlier this month, but Senate Republicans shot it down Friday, citing concerns that a lengthy review of the Capitol attack would effectively keep the issue in the headlines until the 2022 midterm elections without revealing any new information, as CBS News reported.

“I do not believe the additional, extraneous ‘commission’ that Democratic leaders want would uncover crucial new facts or promote healing,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said of the bill, according to Fox News. “Frankly, I do not believe it is even designed to.”

Sen. John Thune, a South Dakota Republican, was more blunt in his assessment.

“I want our midterm message to be…jobs and wages and the economy and national security and safe streets…and not relitigating the 2020 election,” he said, according to Fox. “Anything that gets us rehashing the 2020 election, I think, is a day lost.”

The search for the truth

In the end, the effort to establish the commission failed 54–35 in the Senate, “well short of the 60 votes needed” to pass, as CBS noted. But just because Republicans in Washington are choosing to look to the future rather than the past doesn’t mean the trouble is over for Pelosi and other congressional leaders who are still keeping security records related to the Jan. 6 riot under wraps.

In a statement when his group’s suit was first filed back in February, Judicial Watch’s Fitton said “the public has a right to know about how Congress handled security and what all the videos show of the U.S. Capitol riot.” But will those details ever actually come to light?

Only time will tell.

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