The January 6 committee organizes a historic confrontation

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Hello, Early Birds! Please send your warmest congratulations to our amazing co-author, Theo Meyer, at his wedding. Thank you for waking up with us and to M💍nday! (PS Scroll to the bottom of this newsletter for a surprise)

In today’s edition … Theo sat down with NRC President, Tom Emmer to discuss abortion and midterm exams… President Biden and lawmakers are rushing to respond to the formula milk shortage … senate kick Vote on aid to Ukraine next week…but first…

Jan. 6 Committee Stages Historic Showdown After Subpoenaing 5 House Republicans

The committee’s Jan. 6 Thursday decision to subpoena five Republican House lawmakers sets up a tense and historic showdown over Congress’s ability to coerce its members into participating in one of its own investigations — the result of which could have major political and legal ramifications.

None of the five House GOP lawmakers who received subpoenas – Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (California) and Jim Jordan Representatives (Ohio), Andy Bigg (Arizona.) Mo Brooks (Alabama) and Scott Perry (Pa.) – said whether he would comply with the committee’s request to answer his questions.

Their first reaction was to say they hadn’t ‘seen’ the subpoena yet (although McCarthy acknowledged that his lawyer had), but they strongly signaled that they would not comply. , calling the investigation “illegitimate” and a “witch hunt”.

Like Felicia Sonmez, Jacqueline Alemany, Marianna Sotomayor and Leigh Anne report, the chairman of the committee, Representative Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said the subpoenas were necessary because “several of our colleagues have information relevant to our investigation of the Jan. 6 attack and the events leading up to it.”

  • “These are people who have been involved in discussions with the president. They were in communication with White House staff on January 6, before that. Some were involved in the effort to overturn the election. Some spoke at the rally before the attack. One of them said publicly that the president had called on him to cancel the election,” Representative Adam Schiff (D-California) explained.

“Committee members are trying to downplay the unprecedented nature of the subpoenas of serving members of Congress. Investigators had been working to identify precedents for subpoenas of serving members, according to two people familiar with the investigation. One example they focused on is the House Ethics Committee’s two-year investigation into the former congressman’s personal finances. Charles B. Rangelwrite Felicia, Jackie, Marianna and Leigh Ann.

But the panel’s investigation is not an ethics case against an individual lawmaker, rather its members have described it as a thorough investigation into an attack on democracy encouraged by the incumbent president of the United States.

Schiff dismissed the political ramifications or retaliation that awaited Democrats if Republicans won control of Congress in the midterm elections.

“I’m much more concerned that they’re following through on what McCarthy tried to do when he didn’t have the power to overturn the election,” he said.

Vice-president Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) said the subpoena decision was ultimately made because “it reflects the importance and seriousness of the investigation, and the seriousness of the attack on the Capitol.”

The five Republicans were called before the committee in the last week of May – less than two weeks before the committee begins a series of public hearings on June 9.

NRCC Chairman Emmer says midterm reviews will be about the economy, not abortion

We spoke with the Republican National Congress Committee Chairman Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) on why he doesn’t think abortion will be a major issue in November, how he advises Republican House candidates to talk about the issue, and why he’s bullish on Illinois and Connecticut. This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.

Early: How much will it change the course of the midterm elections if the Supreme Court overturns Roe vs. Wade?

Emmer: I hope that voters will decide based on the candidates presented to them and the main issues. It will be inflation, the economy. This will be the crime wave that the Democrats, frankly, are responsible for with their “defunding the police” nonsense. This will be the border. It will be education. It will be the instability that this administration has created around the world. Do I suspect [abortion] could affect some voters? Sure.

Early: An NRC spokesperson said last week that Democrats in competitive races “will be forced to explain their extreme stance on late-term abortion to voters.” Do you advise House Republicans to take on this issue?

Emmer: Well I’m actually asking [reporters] ask the question. There was an article on one of our swing neighborhoods [in Pennsylvania] recently. They never asked [Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.)] what his position was. Does she agree with the White House or does she disagree with the White House? Does she support abortions up to the day a child is born or not? I think this question should be asked.

Early: The NRCC is targeting some Democratic incumbents in suburban blue neighborhoods, such as Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.) in suburban Philadelphia and Representative Mikie Sherrill (DN.J.) outside New York. Do you think the abortion issue has the potential to be more salient in districts like these?

Emmer: We targeted 72 districts. The vast majority of them are districts that Joe Biden had some success. But I think you’re probably looking at the greatest political realignment of our time since the Reagan years. Reuters had an article came out recently – a bunch of interviews in Phoenix, one of those swing neighborhoods you talk about. Twenty-one women were interviewed, and they all said inflation was the number one problem. [While most of the women Reuters interviewed said inflation was the issue that galvanized them, two named abortion.]

Early: You have recently went to the neighborhood of Representative Sean Patrick Maloney (DN.Y.), the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee President, to raise funds. Congressional Leadership Fund, the Republican House’s flagship super PAC, is already running ads there. How aggressively is the NRCC targeting Maloney for the loss?

Emmer: In the neighborhoods we have targeted, it is not the person we are targeting. That does not make any sense. This is the message. I made it very clear to many of these people that they have a choice to make: they can retire or they will lose next fall.

Early: The exact boundaries of Maloney’s district and all other House seats in New York are in constant flux after the New York Court of Appeals overturned the Democrats’ gerrymandered map in March. How does this decision boost Republicans’ chances of retaking the House?

Emmer: We said from day one that our guys should never rely on a redistricting to get a majority. Seems like it’s pretty much a wash, no matter what happens in New York. But I expect us to get one to three seats in Arizona. I expect we can land a seat or two in Texas. We could take one to four in Florida. We’re looking at one to three in Connecticut, maybe one in New Hampshire. One in Maine. We might take two or three in New York, depending on what it looks like. We could take a few in Michigan. And one of the worst gerrymanders in the country by Democrats in Illinois – I believe they put one to five seats on the line.

Early: Democrats controlled redistricting in Connecticut and Illinois, of course. What do you think are the biggest opportunities there?

Emmer: I want to clarify, I’m not pointing at the left field wall. I think one to three seats in Connecticut are at stake. And that, of course, means there’s a chance we could win in Connecticut. [In Illinois]i think with their gerrymander stretch, [Democrats] put a lot of places in the slice D+5, D+6. And I think in this environment, these seats will [be in] cheek.

Biden and Congress rush to address formula shortage

Washington’s latest challenge:President Biden and lawmakers on both sides are scrambling to address the growing lack of infant formula in many stores, which has made it difficult for some parents to feed their young children,” our colleagues Marianna Sotomayor and Ashley Parker report.

  • “On Thursday, Biden received an update from retailers and manufacturers, including Wal-Mart, Target, Reckitt and Gerber. Then administration officials announced they would cut red tape in hopes of getting more formula to stores faster, appealed to the Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general to crack down on price gouging of formulas and increase imports of formulas to stimulate domestic supply.
  • It’s all about the medium term: “The shortage is just the latest example of the challenges Democrats in particular are facing ahead of the midterm elections as rising prices and supply chain issues continue on their watch. Republicans are hoping to capitalize on the portrayal of Democrats as a party that cannot govern to win over voters, especially moderates who have been financially squeezed.

Senate postpones vote on aid to Ukraine until next week

As we picked up Thursday morning, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) held the $39.8 billion financing bill for Ukraine because he wants an inspector general to oversee the funds. Senate leaders could not reach an agreement with Paul on Thursday, meaning the Senate left town for the weekend without passing what the White House said was urgent legislation.

The attempt to appease Paul led to a rare moment in the Senate. Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic leader chuck schumer have united to pressure Paul to allow a final vote this week.

But Paul objected. He wanted the change to be made to the bill itself rather than having an amendment vote. So the Senate will hold a closing vote on the motion to proceed with the Ukraine bill on Monday night, beginning the process that could take all week if they don’t have Paul on board.

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