The Speaker of the United States’ House of Representatives is rejecting two Republicans put forward by the House’s Republican leader Kevin McCarthy to sit on a committee investigating the January 6 Capitol insurrection, citing the “integrity” of the probe.
Nancy Pelosi said in a statement on Wednesday that she would not accept the appointments of Indiana representative Jim Banks, whom Mr McCarthy picked to be the top Republican on the panel, or Ohio representative Jim Jordan.
Both are close allies of former president Donald Trump, whose supporters laid siege to the Capitol that day.
In the hours after the insurrection, both Mr Banks and Mr Jordan voted to overturn Joe Biden’s presidential victory.
Mrs Pelosi said she had spoken with Mr McCarthy and told him that she would reject the two names.
“With respect for the integrity of the investigation, with an insistence on the truth and with concern about statements made and actions taken by these members, I must reject the recommendations of Representatives Banks and Jordan to the Select Committee,” Mrs Pelosi said.
Mrs Pelosi has the authority to approve or reject members, per committee rules, though she acknowledged her move was “unprecedented”.
She said in the statement that she had accepted Mr McCarthy’s three other picks — Illinois representative Rodney Davis, North Dakota representative Kelly Armstrong and Texas representative Troy Nehls.
Like Mr Jordan and Mr Banks, Mr Nehls voted to overturn Mr Biden’s victory. Mr Armstrong and Mr Davis voted to certify the election.
Mr Banks recently travelled with Mr Trump to the US-Mexico border and to visit him at his New Jersey golf course.
Mr Jordan was one of Mr Trump’s most vocal defenders in his two impeachments.