WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The mother of a police officer who died after battling a mob that attacked the U.S. Capitol is seeking meetings with Republican senators to urge them to vote for a commission to probe the riot, a spokeswoman for one of the senators said.
Gladys Sicknick, the mother of fallen Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, will meet on Thursday with Republican Senator Susan Collins, the lawmaker’s spokeswoman said. Collins is one of only a few Republican senators who have said they favor a commission.
“Not having a Jan. 6 commission to look into exactly what occurred is a slap in the faces of all the officers who did their jobs that day,” Sicknick said in a statement to Politico, which was first to report that she was seeking meetings with Senate Republicans.
A Senate vote is likely this week https://www.reuters.com/world/us/moderate-democrats-manchin-sinema-favor-bipartisan-commission-examine-jan-6-2021-05-25 on the proposed bipartisan commission to probe the events of Jan. 6, when President Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the building while Congress was certifying Democrat Joe Biden’s November election victory.
Brian Sicknick, 42, died of a stroke a day after fighting with the mob that smashed windows, attacked officers with poles and bear spray and sent lawmakers running for cover. Four civilians died in the violence.
Last week, 35 Republicans in the House of Representatives joined Democrats in voting to pass legislation that would create a bipartisan commission modeled on the one Congress passed following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The bill requires that the commission issue its final report by Dec. 31.
But the Senate is divided 50-50 between the parties and requires 60 votes to pass most legislation, meaning that under current rules, 10 Republican votes are needed to advance the measure. So far, just a handful of Republicans, including Collins, have indicated they are at least willing to consider the bill.
Collins has proposed an amendment in an attempt to make the commission more palatable to Republicans. She says the staff should be jointly appointed by the chair and vice chair. She also favors a quick wind-down of the commission when it finishes.
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and other senior Republicans argue that ongoing probes by two Senate committees are sufficient investigation.
Republicans also worry the commission will keep public attention on Trump and his false claims that his election defeat resulted from fraud, which could hurt them in the 2022 congressional elections.
(Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Scott Malone and Peter Cooney)