Speed Reads

he really did it

Journalists and pundits shocked by McConnell's break with RNC over Jan. 6: 'Pigs just flew'

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) just stood up for newly censured GOP Reps. (and Jan. 6 committee members) Adam Kinzinger (Ill.) and Liz Cheney (Wyo.) — and journalists and pundits on Twitter can barely believe what they're seeing.

While speaking to reporters at the Capitol on Tuesday, McConnell broke from the language used by the Republican National Committee last week and described the Jan. 6 Capitol riot as a "violent insurrection," The Washington Post reports. During the Friday vote to formally censure Kinzinger and Cheney, the RNC called the committee investigating the insurrection "a Democrat-led persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse."

"We saw it happen," McConnell said Tuesday, referring to Jan. 6. "It was a violent insurrection for the purpose of trying to prevent the peaceful transfer of power after a legitimately certified election, from one administration to the next. That's what it was."

He also hit back at the RNC's decision to go after the GOP representatives working on the Capitol riot investigation.

"Traditionally, the view of the national party committees is that we support all members of our party, regardless of their positions on some issues," McConnell continued. "The issue is whether or not the RNC should be sort of singling out members of our party who may have different views of the majority. That's not the job of the RNC."

Reporters were shocked by what they were hearing.

"Pigs just flew," said journalist Lauren Wolfe.

Others, however, felt the minority leader's simple statement not worthy of celebration, or that it was perhaps born of ulterior motives.