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McConnell and McCarthy split over RNC censure resolution

Mitch McConnell (R), Senate Minority Leader
NBC News / YouTube
Mitch McConnell (R), Senate Minority Leader

By Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

The top two Republican leaders in Congress were at odds Tuesday over the Republican National Committee’s recent resolution that formally censured GOP Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for serving on the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, pressed by CNN’s Manu Raju on the RNC’s decision to refer to that day as “legitimate political discourse” in the resolution, said that what occurred on January 6, 2021, at the US Capitol was “a violent insurrection.”

He also said that the RNC should not be “singling out members of our party who may have different views from the majority,” adding that it’s “not the job of the RNC.”

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, meanwhile, defended the RNC’s use of “legitimate political discourse,” claiming that what the RNC had been referring to were “six RNC members” who had been subpoenaed by the House panel. Those people, the House Republican leader said, “weren’t even here, who were in Florida that day.”

It was unclear what exactly the California Republican was referring to, but one of his aides said that RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel informed him that there were six RNC members targeted by the panel. An RNC official confirmed the two discussed six “current and former RNC officials” who have been subpoenaed by the panel and referred CNN to a list of individuals who have come under scrutiny.

It’s still unclear which of the six RNC officials who received letters from the panel were in Florida on January 6.

Nevertheless, the RNC resolution makes no mention of the matter that McCarthy sought to highlight. Instead, it condemns Cheney and Kinzinger for engaging in the “persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse.”

Asked by Raju if he supported the resolution, McCarthy didn’t respond. Asked later by CNN’s Annie Grayer to respond to the RNC’s characterization of January 6 as “legitimate political discourse,” McCarthy said: “Yeah everybody knows there was. Anyone who broke inside was not.”

This is a breaking news story and will be updated.

™ & © 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

CNN’s Manu Raju, Annie Grayer and Morgan Rimmer contributed to this report.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - US Politics

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