Feb 14, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Lindsey Graham voices support for 9/11-style probe into Capitol siege

Lindsey Graham holds a face mask while standing in an elevator

Graham boards an elevator in the Capitol on Feb. 13. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/pool/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), an avid Trump supporter who voted to acquit the former president during his second impeachment trial, joined lawmakers' calls for a 9/11-style commission into the Jan. 6 Capitol siege while on "Fox News Sunday."

Why it matters: Momentum has been growing since last month for a bipartisan commission to investigate the lethal attack on the Capitol, and is one of the last ways Congress could attempt to hold Trump accountable for the violence, the New York Times reports.

What they're saying: “We need a 9/11 commission to find out what happened and make sure it never happens again, and I want to make sure that the Capitol footprint can be better defended next time,” Graham said on Fox. He also made clear on Sunday that he believes Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's condemnation of Trump following his acquittal was a mistake and could come back to haunt Republicans in 2022.

  • Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) told ABC's George Stephanopoulos: "There is still more evidence that the American people need and deserve to hear, and a 9/11 commission is a way to make sure that we secure the Capitol going forward and that we lay bare the record of just how responsible and how abjectly violating of his constitutional oath President Trump really was."
  • House impeachment manager Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.) advocated for "a full commission and impartial commission, not guided by politics, but filled with people who would stand up to the courage of their conviction, like Dr. Cassidy" on ABC's "This Week."

Of note: Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) — who voted to convict Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection — voiced his support for "a complete investigation about what happened on Jan. 6" while on ABC's "This Week" on Sunday.

  • "Why was there not more law enforcement, National Guard already mobilized, what was known, who knew it, when they knew it?" Cassidy said, adding that investigating these areas "builds the basis so this never happens again in the future."
  • Cassidy added that he did not want Jan. 6 "to define the future of the Republican Party."
Go deeper