IN Focus: Sen. Braun, Reps. Hollingsworth, Spartz talk this week’s top stories

IN Focus: Indiana Politics

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As President Biden works to get the bipartisan infrastructure deal across the finish line, the House approved the creation this past week of a select committee to investigate the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-Indiana) was one of 35 House Republicans to vote in favor of the first proposed 1/6 commission. But he voted against the creation of the select committee.

“The first vote I cast was for a bipartisan committee, with an equal number of Republicans and an equal number of Democrats, and I think that’s what Americans want,” Hollingsworth said in a one-on-one interview. “In the face of this tragedy, what they want to see is a bipartisan effort to get to root causes. What we saw this past week was not a bipartisan effort. It was instead a Nancy Pelosi-led and selected commission, and that’s not what Americans want. We don’t need more partisanship in this country. We need more bipartisanship.”

Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-Indiana) opposed the originally-proposed 1/6 commission and also voted against the select committee.

When we asked if she wanted to see the riot investigated, Spartz said, “I actually was one of the first people to send a letter to Speaker Pelosi right after January 6 to really look into and investigate what’s really happened, why did we have such miscommunication between different agencies. But it needs to be done by law enforcement, not in a political way.

“We cannot be politicizing every issue,” Spartz continued. “And it became so political that it’s becoming unhealthy. So I think that what the FBI is doing, the Department of Justice, what they’re doing, what Capitol Police is doing is actually going to be much more effective and less biased.”

We also asked Spartz where she stood on the bipartisan infrastructure deal.

“I think we should come up with [a] bipartisan deal where both sides negotiate and we can come to some more narrow-focused infrastructure bill that both sides can support,” Rep. Spartz said. “And I think the Senate is working on this issue. Unfortunately the House and our Speaker doesn’t want to work on any bipartisan legislation. It’s unfortunate.”

We spoke with Sen. Mike Braun (R-Indiana) about infrastructure during his visit to Shelbyville Monday.

When asked whether he would support the smaller infrastructure package that both sides agreed upon after negotiations, Braun said, “If in fact act it was coupled to what the rest of it is. If it’s a gimmick to get that through and then spend $1 trillion on something just because you decoupled it, I’m probably not going to be for that because that means we’re borrowing even more money from our kids and grandkids for a whole array of things, and if we do infrastructure and have hard pay-fors, that’s different. That’s the way we’ve always done it in the past.”

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