MISSOULA, Mont. — Montana’s U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale is one of 21 House Republicans who voted against a bill Tuesday that would have awarded the Congressional Gold Medal to Capitol police officers who responded to the Jan. 6 Capitol siege.
NBC Montana asked Rosendale’s office why he voted against it.
In a statement, a spokesperson said, "Rep. Rosendale voted in favor of a bill to give gold medals to USCP in March. Unfortunately, Nancy Pelosi is continuing to play politics with the events of that day and months later brought a bill to the floor with an unrelated act of violence at the Capitol perpetrated by an Islamic extremist--attempting to pin that act on protesters months prior."
The bill includes awarding the medal to Officer Billy Evans, who died in April when a driver rammed a vehicle into a Capitol Complex barricade.
We asked how the bill pins Evans’ death on Jan. 6, and they responded, “The title of the bill is ‘A bill to award four congressional gold medals to the United States Capitol Police and those who protected the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021,‘ however Officers Evans death was in no way related to Jan 6th.”
When asked if Rosendale believes Evans should be honored in another way, the spokesperson said, “He believes that he should be honored (he did lie in honor at the capitol) and would have voted for a Gold Medal for Officer Evans. But this bill did not do that, and instead his sacrifice was wrapped into Jan 6th, which he believes dishonors the memory of Officer Evans.”
On Wednesday, Rosendale sent a statement saying he would vote against a bill that would make Juneteenth a federal holiday. Juneteenth celebrates when slaves were emancipated in Confederate states.
“Let’s call an ace an ace. This is an effort by the Left to create a day out of whole cloth to celebrate identity politics as part of its larger efforts to make Critical Race Theory the reigning ideology of our country. Since I believe in treating everyone equally, regardless of race, and that we should be focused on what unites us rather than our differences, I will vote no,” Rosendale’s statement said.
In his press release, it says the bill “isn't an effort to commemorate emancipation, it’s very clearly tied to the larger hard-left agenda to enshrine the racial history of this country as the prime aspect of our national story. They do not want to highlight all the good this country has brought to the world--flight, our Constitution, the defeat of communism and Nazism, the internet--but instead our racial sins. America is good and efforts to cast the country as otherwise should be opposed.”
Only 14 members of the U.S. House voted no on the Juneteenth bill.