Politics: January 6 committee staff are angry at Liz Cheney for focusing too much on Trump and think she's doing it for political gain, report says

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U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY). Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images © Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY). Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images
  • The House select committee investigating January 6 is set to conclude at the end of the year.
  • Staffers told The Washington Post they are concerned the final report could focus too much on Trump.
  • They blamed Rep. Liz Cheney and said other important findings were not being included.

The staff for the January 6 panel has expressed frustration with Rep. Liz Cheney for focusing the committee's final report too much on former President Donald Trump, at the expense of other aspects of the investigations, according to a report published Wednesday by The Washington Post.

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The Post spoke to 15 former and current staffers who said Cheney, the committee's vice chair, has exerted high levels of control over the investigation and the final report. Some staffers said they felt that Cheney's focus on Trump was for her own political gain.

"We all came from prestigious jobs, dropping what we were doing because we were told this would be an important fact-finding investigation that would inform the public," one former committee staffer told The Post. "But when [the committee] became a Cheney 2024 campaign, many of us became discouraged."

Cheney is one of just two Republicans who joined the committee, which is set to expire at the end of this year and is highly unlikely to be renewed in a Republican-controlled House. Cheney's work on the committee, and staunch defiance of Trump, has raised her national profile and earned the praise of some Democrats.

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But her political standing has taken a hit in the GOP. After losing her House leadership position in 2021, Wyoming voters overwhelmingly voted for her Trump-backed challenger in the Republican primary. Still, Cheney said in August she was thinking about running for president and would decide in the coming months.

Representatives for Cheney and Rep. Bennie Thompson, chair of the January 6 committee, did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.

"Donald Trump is the first president in American history to attempt to overturn an election and prevent the peaceful transfer of power," Cheney spokesman Jeremy Adler told The Post. "So, damn right Liz is 'prioritizing' understanding what he did and how he did it and ensuring it never happens again."

Adler continued: "Some staff have submitted subpar material for the report that reflects long-held liberal biases about federal law enforcement, Republicans, and sociological issues outside the scope of the Select Committee's work. She won't sign onto any 'narrative' that suggests Republicans are inherently racist or smears men and women in law enforcement, or suggests every American who believes God has blessed America is a white supremacist."

It's unclear when the committee's final report would be released, but Thompson has said it would come out by early December.

Aspects of the investigation that staffers told The Post they were worried would not make the cut included findings about: the failings of police and intelligence officials; financing of the Capitol siege; and militia groups and extremism.

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"I don't think this fight over elemental democracy is over, by any means," Frances Fox Piven said, cautioning against post-midterms complacency.In an interview with The Guardian published on Thursday, Frances Fox Piven — an academic once targeted and threatened by far-right figures — warned that Americans should not get complacent after the midterms, where a widely-anticipated red wave for the Republican Party failed to materialize. The GOP, though, did take control of the House.

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