(The Hill) – House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Wednesday evening that he will not cooperate with the select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol, asserting the panel “is not conducting a legitimate investigation.”

McCarthy, in a statement released hours after the committee asked him to voluntarily cooperate with its probe, maintained that the “illegitimate” panel was seeking to interview him about “private conversations not remotely related to the violence that unfolded at the Capitol.”

The panel noted in its letter to McCarthy earlier Wednesday, however, that the GOP leader previously acknowledged speaking with former President Trump as the attack on the Capitol was underway.

McCarthy in his statement Wednesday night knocked the committee for subpoenas I it has issued and criticized lawmakers for holding individuals in contempt of Congress.

He also slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for rejecting two of his nominees to the Jan. 6 committee last year — GOP Reps. Jim Jordan (Ohio) and Jim Banks (Ind.) — writing that the panel is “not serving any legislative purpose.”

Pelosi rejected the two GOP picks in July after Democrats raised objections to the Trump allies being on the panel, citing concerns over “the impact their appointments may have on the integrity of the investigation.” She later appointed Reps. Liz Cheney (Wyo.) and Adam Kinzinger (Ill.), two GOP critics of Trump, to the committee.

“As a representative and the leader of the minority party, it is with neither regret nor satisfaction that I have concluded to not participate with this select committee’s abuse of power that stains this institution today and will harm it going forward,” McCarthy said Wednesday.