If a set of high-profile Senate and House hearings into the Jan. 6 insurrection and related domestic terrorism are any indication, Congress is determined to look away from the elected Republican politicians who provoked hundreds to storm the Capitol and leave five people dead.
The Senate hearings revealed an abiding interest in pinpointing intelligence and security failures ahead of and during the insurrection. A House subcommittee hearing on Wednesday took a look at domestic terrorism at the state and local level, from prosecutors’ perspectives. A different House hearing on Thursday excoriated the social media giants for their role as disinformation vectors. Those intelligence, information and security failures are real, as is far-right terrorism in places like Michigan where a militia plotted to kidnap the governor. They’re a critical part of the fiasco of Jan. 6. But they’re not the whole story.
The hearings also revealed an abiding disinterest in pinpointing the reason any of those errors coalesced into failure in the first place: the false narrative of election theft promoted by Donald Trump and his allies, including many in Congress. Without recognizing them as the wellspring of the insurrection, some observers warn, they will be free to produce the next one.
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