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Sen. Lisa Murkowski. Photo: Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) told reporters on Tuesday that she would support the House-passed bill to launch a commission to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

Why it matters: Murkowski is now the second Senate Republican, along with Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), to express public support for the bill. At least 10 Senate Republicans are needed for the bill to pass.

  • Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has indicated she also supports launching a commission, but she expressed that the bill has "flaws" that need to be corrected, per The Hill.

The big picture: The House passed the commission bill last week, with the support of 35 Republicans.

  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) publicly opposed the bill last week, calling it a "slanted and unbalanced proposal.”
  • “Anything that gets us rehashing the 2020 election, I think, is a day lost on being able to draw contrast between us and the Democrats’ very radical left-wing agenda,” Senate GOP Whip Sen. John Thune (S.D.) told the Washington Post last Wednesday.

What they're saying: "The formation of the commission is more important now than it’s ever been. In the months since Jan. 6, Washington Republicans have tried to rewrite history and recast the attack of Jan. 6 as little more than peaceful protests that got out of hand," Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on the House floor Monday.

Go deeper

Updated Sep 1, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Rematches heat up for Minnesota Legislature

Photo: Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

The 2022 midterms are over a year away, but potential rematches are already heating up for some competitive state legislative races.

Driving the news: Democrat Aleta Borrud announced her second run for Senate District 26 over the weekend. She lost to incumbent Republican Sen. Carla Nelson by about 900 votes in 2020.

Why it matters: With narrow majorities in each chamber, the outcomes of a handful of races next year will determine party control of the Legislature.

  • Second- or third-time candidates bring name recognition, existing volunteers and campaign infrastructure to the table. But they also may carry baggage from past campaigns, as some have lost before.

Context: Republicans have a one-seat majority in the state Senate, though the decision by two former Democrats to caucus with them as independent effectively grows it to three. Meanwhile, the DFL holds a six-seat edge in the House.

State of play: Borrud isn't the only losing candidate to ready another run.

  • Democrat Sara Flick, who lost narrowly to GOP Sen. David Senjem in 2020, told Torey she’s announcing her second bid for the Rochester-area seat next week.
  • Republican Andrew Myers is already campaigning for a Lake Minnetonka-area House seat after losing to Democratic Rep. Kelly Morrison by 313 votes.
  • Rob Farnsworth, the GOP nominee who lost to DFL Rep. Julie Sandstede by 30 votes, is running for that Iron Range district again, too.
  • Former DFL House Reps. Brad Tabke of Shakopee and Jeff Brand of Saint Peter have both announced runs for the seats they lost last year.
  • And Democrat Bonnie Westlin launched a third run against longtime GOP Sen. Warren Limmer of Maple Grove the day she conceded last November.

What we're hearing: Former DFL Rep. John Persell (District 5A), Democrat Randy Brock (26B) and Republican Elliott Engen (38B) might join the list of 2020 candidates running again next year.

  • Former DFL state Sen. Matt Little of Lakeville hasn't made any decisions about a rematch against Republican Zach Duckworth. He declined to comment further, saying it didn't feel right to discuss a possible race given Duckworth's current deployment to the Middle East.

The catch: It's a redistricting cycle, meaning the legislative and congressional maps need to be redrawn to account for changes in the population. That could affect both competitiveness and eligibility, if candidates or incumbents end up living outside district lines.

What to watch: The new maps are expected to lead to more open races, as incumbents retire or step aside to run for another office.

  • State Sens. Chris Eaton and Jerry Newton, both Democrats, have already announced that they won't seek another term.

Senate passes bill to expand assistance for Americans returning from Afghanistan

A U.S. Air Force aircraft takes off from the airport in Kabul on Aug. 30. Photo: Aamir Qureshi /AFP via Getty Images

The Senate on Tuesday passed a bill that will increase funding available to provide temporary assistance to Americans returning from Afghanistan.

Why it matters: The bill — approved by the House last month — will allocate up to $10 million for fiscal years 2021 and 2022 to provide emergency repatriation assistance to individuals coming from Afghanistan, CNN reports.

Capitol Police "closely monitoring" Sept. 18 pro-Capitol riot rally

Members of the Proud Boys make a hand gesture while walking near the US Capitol in Washington, DC on Jan. 6. Photo: Amanda Andrade-Rhoades/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

The U.S. Capitol Police Department is "closely monitoring" a Sept. 18 rally planned in support of individuals arrested for storming the Capitol on Jan. 6, USCP chief Tom Manger said Wednesday in a written statement shared with reporters.

Driving the news: The rally — spearheaded by former Donald Trump presidential campaign official Matt Braynard — is known as "Justice for J6" and will be held on the Capitol grounds, WUSA9 reports.

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