May 19, 2021

Rep. Watson Coleman Votes to Uncover the Truth of January 6th Attacks, Establish Independent, Bipartisan Commission

Today, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12) voted for H.R. 3233, legislation to establish an independent, bipartisan 9/11-type commission to examine and report upon the facts, causes and security relating to the terrorist mob attack on the United States Capitol on January 6th, 2021.  The Commission would also be charged with making recommendations to prevent future attacks on our democracy.

“January 6th was one of the darkest days in our nation’s history,” said Watson Coleman.  “It was an attack on the symbol of our government, the people’s Representatives, and our democracy itself. Today I voted to establish the January 6th Commission so that we can determine all of the facts of that deadly day and ensure that such an attack can never happen again.”

On January 6th, the United States Capitol was attacked by hundreds of insurrectionists as the Congress voted to validate the results of the presidential election.  The storming of the Capitol threatened the lives of Members of Congress, staff, workers and D.C. and Capitol Police – resulting in five deaths, more than 140 injuries to law enforcement officers and lasting terror and trauma.  In the wake of the worst attack on our Capitol since the British set the Capitol on fire in 1814, many unanswered questions remain.

That is why the bipartisan leadership of the House Homeland Security Committee worked hard to reach a bipartisan agreement on an independent and impartial commission to investigate the attack and recommend improvements to Capitol security.  This Commission closely mirrors the 9/11 Commission and has the endorsement of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission Chairs, Governor Tom Kean and Congressman Lee Hamilton.

“We very strongly urge House Members to support H.R. 3233, the bipartisan National Commission to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol Complex,” said Governor Kean and Congressman Hamilton.  “The January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol was one of the darkest days in the history of our country.  Americans deserve an objective and an accurate account of what happened.  As we did in the wake of September 11, it's time to set aside partisan politics and come together as Americans in common pursuit of truth and justice.”

The Commission will have ten members: five members, including the Chair, appointed by the Speaker of the House and Majority Leader of the Senate; and five, including the Vice Chair, appointed by the Minority Leaders of the House and Senate.  Commissioners must be experts in law enforcement, civil rights and liberties, law, intelligence or cybersecurity and will be tasked with investigating the facts of the January 6th attack, including the insurrectionists’ operations and motivations as well as the response by local law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

“The United States Capitol is known across the country and around the world as a symbol of democracy, and it is our responsibility to ensure its resilience,” continued Watson Coleman.  “This is an opportunity to bring this bipartisan commission in so that we can get the politics out of this issue and look at the facts and evidence.”