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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said on a conference call with members Monday that there is "undisputedly" no evidence that people linked to Antifa participated in last week's deadly siege on the Capitol, per sources on the call, and told members he had urged President Trump to call President-elect Biden after Trump promised a transfer of power.

Driving the news: Earlier Monday, McCarthy sent a letter to rank and file House Republicans, saying he remains opposed to impeaching Trump over his actions around last week's deadly Capitol siege, and laid out other responses lawmakers could make, including censure.

Between the lines: McCarthy is now trying to navigate how to bridge the factions within the party following Wednesday's siege at the Capitol, and is treading carefully by telling members Trump is partially to blame for what happened without condemning him outright.

What he's saying: "Having spoken to so many of you, I know we are all taking time to process the events of that day. Please know I share your anger and your pain," McCarthy wrote in his letter to members.

  • "In the same breath, I have also heard profound resolve from our conference in the face of this evil. From the dean of the House to our new members who were just sworn in a week ago, you feel an even deeper sense of service and move forward with a renewed clarity of purpose—both for our shared principles and for the future of our nation," he added.
  • "Personally, I continue to believe that an impeachment at this time would have the opposite effect of bringing our country together when we need to get America back on a path towards unity and civility."
  • "Notwithstanding the Speaker’s push towards impeachment, I have heard from members across our conference who have raised at least four potential avenues available to the House to ensure that the events of January 6 are rightfully denounced and prevented from occurring in the future.
  • These include, McCarthy said, a resolution censure, a bipartisan commission to investigate the circumstances surrounding last week's riot, reforming the Electoral Count Act of 1887, and legislation to promote voter confidence in future federal elections.

Some Republicans and conservatives, have baselessly claimed that individuals linked to Antifa were pretending to be Trump supporters to cause chaos during last week's riot.

  • McCarthy's comments come after law enforcement, including the FBI, said there was "no indication" of involvement by Antifa.

Go deeper: House Democrats introduce impeachment charge against Trump

Go deeper

The Mischief Makers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Several Republican and Democratic lawmakers are emerging as troublemakers within their parties and political thorns for their leadership.

Why it matters: We're calling this group "The Mischief Makers" — members who threaten to upend party unity — the theme eclipsing Washington at the moment — and potentially jeopardize the Democrats' or Republicans' position heading into the 2022 midterms.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Virginia attorney general fires Jan. 6 investigator from university post

McIntire Amphitheater at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia. Photo: Robert Knopes/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The lead investigator for the Jan. 6 House select committee investigating the Capitol riot has been fired from his position as the University of Virginia's counsel by the state's new Republican attorney general, per the Washington Post.

Why it matters: Democrats say the removal of Tim Heaphy from his post after some three years while he's on leave from the university to investigate the insurrection is likely "retribution" for the House probe — an accusation strongly denied by the office of state Attorney General Jason Miyares (R).

5 hours ago - World

Taiwan's military scrambles jets after detecting 39 Chinese warplanes

J-20 stealth fighter jets in Zhuhai in the Guangdong Province of China last year. Photo: Chen Jimin/China News Service via Getty Images

Taiwan's defense force said 39 Chinese warplanes flew into its Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) on Sunday.

Why it matters: The largest Chinese air force incursion into the zone since October came a day after the U.S. and Japanese navies conducted a joint exercise in the Philippine Sea.