Wednesday, February 24, 2021


Politico Playbook writes about a proposed commission to study the January 6 riots:
When Republican TOM KEAN became head of the 9/11 Commission, he got a call from TIM RUSSERT asking him to come on “Meet the Press.” Kean said he’d only appear if his Democratic counterpart on the commission, LEE HAMILTON, were invited too.

Russert balked....
Which reminds us that the Sunday chat shows have had a pro-Republican bias forever, and there was no "golden age" in the Tim Russert era, as some seem to believe.
... Kean — believing the only way for the commission to work was for it to look and act completely bipartisan — told him to “find someone else.” Russert called him back five minutes later and relented. And the commission, which was split evenly between Republicans and Democrats, went on to become one of the most praised instances of bipartisan oversight in modern history.
This story is told as an admonishment to Nancy Pelosi:
Twenty years later, Speaker NANCY PELOSI is calling for a “9/11-style” commission to investigate Jan. 6. But instead of equal representation, Pelosi’s initial recommendation is for the panel to be made up of seven Democratic-appointed members and four Republican-appointed ones.

That would be a mistake, the leaders of the original commission, Kean and Hamilton, told Playbook. Republican voters will never accept the findings if there’s even a whiff of the investigation being driven by Democrats....

Pelosi’s office has said her proposal was only a “discussion draft.” And a Democrat familiar with negotiations over the commission said it’s the GOP that’s playing politics with it, dragging out the process and refusing to commit to a defined purpose for the panel.
In a better country, I'd agree that a 1/6 commission should have equal party representation. But members of the commission should agree on basic facts: that Joe Biden won the election legitimately; that citizens had a right to protest the election outcome but didn't have a right to overrun the Capitol with violent intent; that "patriotism" is not a synonym for "conservatism" or "support for Donald Trump."

But if you find Republicans who agree to all these things, no Republican voter will acknowledge that they're actually party members in good standing. They'll be described as RINOs, cucks, and members of the "Uniparty."

None of the members of the 9/11 Commission held elective office at the time of the appointments. Most were politcal retirees. That might be a better approach to follow now than a commission made up of sitting members of Congress.

But whoever sits on the commission, it will never impress conservatives as balanced unless it completely exonerates the right. An honest, balanced commission might impress liberal and centrist voters, but right-wingers will denounce even Republican members as Deep State puppets unless they conclude that the real villains of 1/6 were Antifa and Nancy Pelosi.

So it probably doesn't matter what the commission looks like. It won't help us achieve a national consensus.

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