A group of people who share an interest in a particular subject gather to discuss it and make decisions. A committee usually meets regularly, with an agenda and a set of procedures (like how to vote or how long each member can speak). Committees are important because they provide members with a chance to discuss issues, solve problems, and learn from experts in their field.

The House Intelligence Committee has launched an investigation into Russian election interference. The panel will explore whether Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election, and if so, how. It also will look at how that meddling might have helped Trump win the presidency.

Its members include a number of Republican and Democratic lawmakers. The panel has already subpoenaed dozens of witnesses and issued multiple indictments against Russian nationals for election-related crimes. The panel is expected to release a report in July.

In a statement released Monday, the committee cited evidence that the president and his top aides were aware that they would be unable to overturn the results of the presidential election. The committee also accused the president and his aides of misleading supporters by saying that they were pursuing an election fraud investigation, when they knew such a claim would have no effect on the outcome of the election.

The committee’s recommendation says that Congress should “consider passing legislation to ensure that individuals who are convicted of violating electoral law, or who engage in activities that interfere with the administration of federal elections, cannot hold public office.” It has referred four Republican House members to the House Ethics Committee for failing to comply with subpoenas, but it’s unclear whether they will face repercussions next year when their party controls the house.

Torres says she will not boycott the new Jan. 6 subcommittee and will attend hearings and meetings. However, she has said she is concerned that the GOP panel will deny that true violence and intent took place during the riot. She also is concerned that Republicans on the new panel will try to limit the scope of its investigations.