Dem leader pushes for committee to investigate Michigan’s involvement in Jan. 6 insurrection 

By: - June 25, 2021 7:37 am

Rioters enter the Senate Chamber on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC. Congress held a joint session today to ratify President-elect Joe Biden’s 306-232 Electoral College win over President Donald Trump. Pro-Trump protesters have entered the U.S. Capitol building after mass demonstrations in the nation’s capital. | Win McNamee/Getty Images

Michigan House Minority Leader Donna Lasinski (D-Scio Twp.) has introduced a resolution creating a bipartisan joint select committee to investigate Michiganders’ involvement in the Jan. 6 pro-Trump insurrection in the U.S. Capitol. 

Lasinski held a press conference Thursday alongside Sen. Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) and members of “Common Defense,” a veteran-run organization representing veterans against racism, hate and violence. 

House Concurrent Resolution 10 would establish a 12-person bipartisan joint select committee to investigate Michigan’s ties to the pro-Trump attack in Washington, D.C., and the April 2020 storming of the Michigan Capitol during a protest against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s COVID-19 health orders, which congressional Democrats have argued was a “dress rehearsal” for Jan. 6. 

Six members from the Senate and six from the House of Representatives would be on the committee. There also would be an equal number of Democrats and Republicans from each chamber, per the resolution.

Lasinski stressed the need for the bipartisan commission to hold Michigan leaders and constituents accountable for their involvement in the insurrection that left five people dead.

“We must seek accountability to protect our democracy and prevent future attacks on our democratic institutions,” Lasinski said. “The people of Michigan deserve this. Acts of violence against our democracy both in Michigan and in D.C. cannot be ignored or left unexamined.”

Hollier also introduced a resolution in the state Senate in January condemning the attempted coup to overturn the 2020 presidential election. The intent of Hollier’s resolution was to establish that there is no place in the nation for undermining the results of the 2020 election. The resolution has since been referred to the Senate Government Operations Committee and no action has been taken. 

Hollier at the press conference condemned Congress’ failure to create a bipartisan committee, referring to U.S. Senate Republicans blocking a bill in May that would have established a panel to investigate the events leading up to and during the storming of the U.S. Capitol. Hollier emphasized the need for the Michigan Legislature to establish its own committee investigating residents’ involvement. 

“It is absolutely essential that we convene a bipartisan group of legislatures who can sit and say, ‘This is what happened, this is domestic terrorism, this is what it looks like,’ and it hasnt happened,” Hollier said. “Transparency is key. Accountability is key. Rooting out the truth is key.”

The introduction of the resolution also comes after Lasinski and Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich (D-Flint) sent a letter to Republican leaders calling on them to create a bipartisan committee to investigate Michigan’s contributions to the Jan. 6 insurrection on the Capitol.

One of Michigan’s lawmakers, Rep. Matt Maddock (R-Milford), traveled to D.C. alongside his wife, now-Michigan GOP Co-Chair Meshawn Maddock, and addressed a rally in D.C. one day prior to the insurrection. Matt Maddock was seated at the beginning of the legislative term and did not face any consequences from GOP House leadership for his actions.

The Maddocks also protested the Electoral College vote a month earlier on Dec. 14 in Lansing, where many Republicans attempted to enter the state capitol to submit a fake GOP elector slate. 

Ryan Kelley, an Allendale Township planning commissioner who has declared he’s running for governor in 2022 as a Republican, allegedly was at the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Several GOP lawmakers have attended anti-Whitmer protests alongside right-wing protesters, self-proclaimed militia activists and members of the Proud Boys during the pandemic, including Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake). As the Advance reported, Shirkey invited militia leaders to his office last year. 

In October, state and federal law enforcement announced the arrests of a dozen men linked to militias who were allegedly plotting to kidnap and kill Whitmer.


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Julia Forrest
Julia Forrest

Julia Forrest is a contributor to the Michigan Advance. She has been covering Michigan and national politics for two years at the Michigan Daily and OpenSecrets. She studies public policy at the University of Michigan.