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U.S. Rep. Meijer reflects on January 6th investigation and extremism

U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer portrait
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer (R-Grand Rapids, MI-3)

Grand Rapids Republican was in favor of a bipartisan committee investigating the insurrection but not the one currently being conducted by House Democrats.

“My hope is that there will be an ultimate work product that can shed more light on things that may nor have risen to the degree of criminality or a criminal referral, but at the same time will shed light on understanding what weaknesses in our institutions were exploited that we need to fix. What parts of our process need to be improved? And how frankly, we can ensure we never reach, or have a repeat of that dark day.”

I asked if there are concerns of extremist ideas moving into the mainstream and if it’s something U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer is keeping an eye on?

“(Sigh) I am. I think there’s always been fringes in politics. I think the danger that I see is this trend, and maybe it was more dramatic on January 6th on the right. But I think there’s the capacity and a willingness to delegitimize institutions across the board instead of working within them to redress grievances and to improve, people seek to attack them. Whether violently like on the 6th or like my Democratic colleagues wanting to abolish the Senate or pack the Supreme Court. All of this frankly, this expansion of the field of play, of the field of contest politically you know, from channels where we have peaceful means of resolving, towards assaulting the Constitutional order whether through policy or violent action I think is deeply troubling and deeply worrisome sand should not be tolerated. But I fear we’re entering an era where bad actions on one side, the other sees that as giving license to go ever more extreme. Now, there’s obviously the question of conspiracy theories and just falsehoods entering into the political consciousness, but there’s also the ways in which leaders on both sides of the aisle play to those fears to exploit it for political gain and I think that takes us far away from where we need to be and only insures that our politics will become more chaotic and frankly, serve the American people less and less with each passing day.”

Patrick joined WGVU Public Media in December, 2008 after eight years of investigative reporting at Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV8 and three years at WYTV News Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. As News and Public Affairs Director, Patrick manages our daily radio news operation and public interest television programming. An award-winning reporter, Patrick has won multiple Michigan Associated Press Best Reporter/Anchor awards and is a three-time Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Award winner with 14 nominations.