Americans could soon get a clearer picture of what happened during one of the most thoroughly politicized events in recent history: the January 6th “insurrection.”
Republicans Matt Gaetz (Fl.) and Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Ca.) have signaled House Republicans will push to release all 14,000 hours of security footage from the Capitol riot.
Republicans to release J6 footage
At his first press conference since being elected Speaker of the House, McCarthy appeared to confirm that he intends to release the footage.
While McCarthy said he wants “to be very thoughtful about it,” he said, “yes, I’m engaged to do that.” He blasted his predecessor Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.) for pushing a distorted, political narrative about January 6th on the American people.
“We watched the politicization of this, I think the American people should see what happened instead of a report that was written on a political basis,” McCarthy said.
During an interview with conservative activist Charlie Kirk, Gaetz said he trusts McCarthy to release all 14,000 hours of footage.
Rep. Matt Gaetz: The American people are finally going to get the truth about Jan 6. pic.twitter.com/Lcz2EdfwhI
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) January 10, 2023
Gaetz said the tape “would give more full context to that day rather than the cherry-picked moments that the January 6th committee tried to use to inflame and further divide our country.”
In a tweet, Gaetz credited McCarthy’s promise to the “20 patriots” who pushed McCarthy to make concessions in his contentious bid to be Speaker.
“Thank you @SpeakerMcCarth for affirming this commitment you made. Keeping promises is how trust is built. I’m growing more optimistic by the day!”
Capitol Police, however, claim McCarthy doesn’t have discretion to release the tape because it “has been designated security information and is therefore protected from public disclosure.” The refusal of the government to release all security footage has led to speculation of a politically motivated cover-up.
The push for more answers comes after the highly partisan January 6th committee released a ponderous report late last year that called for President Trump to be criminally charged and barred from public office.
The committee later released the transcript of its interview with Ray Epps, the man who was seen on tape egging on protesters to enter the Capitol.
Epps has never been charged, and his strangely sympathetic treatment by the January 6th committee has raised eyebrows, especially after he told the committee he “orchestrated” the riot.