Denver Riggleman, a former Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives, has joined the staff of the bipartisan select committee established to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Chairman Bennie G. Thompson, Mississippi Democrat, announced Friday that Mr. Riggleman was among the latest additions to the senior staff of the select committee, which the House voted to create in June.
“I’ve humbly accepted the position of senior technical adviser for the Jan. 6 select committee,” Mr. Riggleman said in a video statement he shared on social media afterward confirming his new role.
“We can’t worry about the color of the jerseys anymore and whether we have an R or a D next to our name,” Mr. Riggleman said in the video. “It’s time for us to look in a fact-based way at what happened on January 6th, but to see if we can prevent this from ever happening again in the future.”
Mr. Riggleman, 51, served a single term representing Virginia’s 5th Congressional District, which includes Charlottesville, among other cities. He was primaried by another Republican last year and left office on Jan 3.
Three days later, supporters of then-President Trump broke into the Capitol building as members of the House and Senate met inside to certify the results of the November election he lost.
Senate Republicans in May blocked a Democratic-led bill that would have created an independent commission to investigate the riot, and the House subsequently voted to create the select committee instead.
The select committee was established to investigate “the facts, circumstances and causes” of the attack on the Capitol, and both Mr. Thompson and Mr. Riggleman believe the latter is qualified to help.
Before politics, Mr. Riggleman said he served in the U.S. Air Force as an intelligence officer and has worked in data analytics for around 20 years. “My background lends itself to this task,” he said.
“Mr. Riggleman brings a deep background in national security and intelligence matters,” agreed Mr. Thompson, and will “provide invaluable insight and expertise as we piece together what happened” Jan. 6.
The bill the House passed creating the select committee allows for the speaker, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat to appoint 13 members, including five after consulting with the GOP minority leader.
Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, California Republican, had recommended five members of his party to the select committee, but he withdrew all of them after Mrs. Pelosi objected to two of his picks.
The select committee currently has nine members, including Mr. Thompson, as well as two Republicans selected by Democratic leadership: Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.
Joseph Maher, principal deputy general counsel for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, has joined the select committee’s senior staff as well, Mr. Thompson announced Friday.