Wary of political fallout, Republicans steer clear of rally for riot suspects

That has left top Republicans in an uncomfortable spot, toiling to distance themselves from an event that is certain to dredge up the subject of the Capitol riot — and that could potentially spiral out of control — but wary of offending voters who sympathize with the cause.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., the House minority leader, told reporters this week that he did not expect any lawmaker in his party to attend, but his office had no response to questions about whether he supported the rally or was dissuading people from attending. Reps. Steve Scalise of Louisiana and Elise Stefanik of New York, the second- and third-ranking House Republicans, have been similarly taciturn about the event.

Even Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., who has been among the most vocal critics of the treatment of the Jan. 6 suspects, said she would not be attending the rally, even as she defended the inspiration behind it.

“There’s a two-track justice system in America, and the treatment of the J6 political prisoners compared with violent antifa/BLM rioters proves it,” she said in a lengthy email statement.