Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., speaks at a news conference held by members of the House Freedom Caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, July 29, 2021, to complain about Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. and masking policies. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) Scott Perry, R-Pa.
Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., speaks at a news conference held by members of the House Freedom Caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, July 29, 2021, to complain about Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. and masking policies. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

While an Ethics Committee referral doesn’t carry the potential consequences of the criminal referrals the Jan. 6 committee made against Donald Trump and several members of his inner circle, the ethics complaint against Perry will bring greater scrutiny to his efforts to help the former president overturn the 2020 election.

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol recommended a formal ethics inquiry into five-term Republican Dauphin County Rep. Scott Perry for his refusal to cooperate in the probe. 

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and two other prominent House Republicans—Reps. Jim Jordan (Ohio) and Andy Biggs (Ariz.)—were also referred to the House ethics committee.

The Jan. 6 committee recommended the Justice Department bring criminal charges against former President Donald Trump and his allies for their role in the Capitol attack.

While the recommendations to the House Ethics Committee don’t carry the potential consequences of the criminal referrals that the committee made against Trump and several members of his inner circle, the ethics complaints will bring greater scrutiny to the actions of the four Republican congressmen regarding Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election and the Jan. 6 attack. 

Perry was subpoenaed by the Jan. 6 committee but refused to sit for a deposition, saying through his attorney that he does not recognize the “legitimacy” of a committee focused more on “scoring political points” than on the “troublemakers” who broke into the Capitol.

His efforts to help Trump overturn the results of the 2020 election are well documented.

Perry was cited more than 50 times in a Senate Judiciary report released in October 2021 outlining how Trump’s effort to overturn his election defeat to Joe Biden brought the Justice Department to the brink of chaos and prompted top officials there and at the White House to threaten to resign.

The Senate report outlined a call Perry made to then-acting Deputy Attorney General Rich Donoghue in December 2020 to say the department wasn’t doing its job with respect to the elections. Perry encouraged Donoghue to elicit Clark’s help because he’s “the kind of guy who could really get in there and do something about this,” the report said.

The committee said it had evidence that Perry sought a pardon from Trump for his role in conspiring to challenge and overturn the results of the 2020 election, an allegation Perry has denied.

A recent report detailing text messages between Perry and former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows shows Perry was spreading wild conspiracy theories in an effort to amplify Trump’s “Big Lie” about the 2020 election.