Democrats are planning to conduct an investigation into Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) using what is described as “among the most secretive committees in Washington.”
The Senate Ethics Committee will investigate the two GOP lawmakers to decide if they played any role in the Capitol incident on Jan. 6.
Prior to those events, both senators said they would oppose the certification of Biden as president. A joint session of Congress was doing just that when the Capitol was stormed by what seemed to be Trump supporters.
The ethics investigation comes after seven Senate Democrats issued an ethics complaint against Hawley and Cruz.
The complaint — issued by Senator Ron Wyden (Ore.), Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.), Mazie Hirono (Hawaii), Tina Smith (N.M.), Tim Kaine (Va.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), and Sherrod Brown (Ohio) — who are all Democrats — claims Hawley and Cruz “amplified election fraud claims.”
The Democratic group demands the two Senators be investigated to decide if they played a role in the coordination of the “attack,” though no evidence has been given suggesting either one of them was involved with the incident.
The Senate Ethics Committee keeps quiet about its process until it takes action, which means, as others have noted, the Cruz and Hawley investigation “will unwind over time with no hint as to where it is leading.”
Senator Kaine claimed the process allows the committee to “ask whatever investigation question we need to, with no time limit. And Hawley and Cruz must have a fair forum to present their thoughts about what occurred.”
But not everyone agrees with the ethics stunt.
Representative Susan Collins (R-Maine) said the probe might be a way to punish Hawley and Cruz for holding alternative views.
“It’s a slippery slope if you punish senators for having unpopular views on the Senate floor,” she said to reporters. “That’s not what an Ethics Committee is for. And I don’t view this as an ethics complaint.”