Family of Fallen Jan. 6 Officer Snub McCarthy and McConnell at Gold Medal Ceremony

The family of Brian Sicknick, an officer who died of natural causes one day after responding to the attack, were in attendance.

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On Tuesday, at a ceremony to commemorate law enforcement officials who responded to the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol, several award recipients and their families snubbed the nation’s top Republicans, Kevin McCarthy and Mitch McConnell. Among those who were seen declining to shake hands with both men were family members of Brian Sicknick, the US Capitol Police officer who died of natural causes one day after responding to the attack. 

“They’re just two-faced,” the mother of Sicknick told CNN. “I’m just tired of them standing there and saying how wonderful the Capitol police is and then they turn around and … go down to Mar-a-Lago and kiss his ring and come back and stand here.”

The snubs are an implicit rebuke of the GOP’s support for Trump after the former president incited the insurrection. McCarthy, in particular, has been one of Trump’s most prominent defenders and Big Lie embracers. After Republicans took back the House last month, McCarthy signaled his intentions to investigate the Jan. 6 committee, while striking something of a deal with the former president in exchange for his endorsement. 

While McConnell has been significantly more vocal in his condemnation of Trump, the Senate minority leader has also played his part in declining to hold Trump accountable. As my colleague Ari Berman previously reported

In many ways McConnell had spent weeks helping embolden Trump’s Big Lie. On November 9, after the media had called the election for Joe Biden, McConnell said “President Trump is 100% within his rights to look into allegations of irregularities and weigh his legal options.” McConnell didn’t recognize Biden as the president-elect until after the Electoral College certified Biden’s victory on December 14.

But snubs from law enforcement officials may not be the biggest thing Republicans have to worry about these days. On Tuesday, Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the House Jan. 6 select committee, announced that the panel is prepared to make criminal referrals soon. 

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