In a move that garnered little public attention, the House of Representatives voted Tuesday to continue the work of its select committee on Benghazi during the 114th Congress.
The committee is chaired by U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), who announced at the time of its formation that Hillary Clinton, who served as secretary of state when the diplomatic mission there was attacked, was not off his witness list, according to a July Liberty Unyielding report.
The 114th Congress will take us into the 2016 presidential election. Timing is everything.
Stars and Stripes reported:
The move to reauthorize the politically charged panel was included in a rules package for the new Congress that passed 234 to 172, mostly along party lines.
Five Democrats on the select committee lamented the reauthorization, which set no limit on the committee’s budget or time frame, which means it could last well into the presidential election year. Hillary Rodham Clinton, a possible Democratic presidential candidate, could be called to testify about the attack, which occurred while she was secretary of state.
“After eight months and more than a million taxpayer dollars spent, it remains unclear what new questions the select committee seeks to answer,” the committee’s Democratic members said in a statement. “Since our members were denied the ability to meaningfully debate or amend the resolution, we now look to the committee to quickly adopt rules that ensure that our Democratic members are able to participate fully in the investigation.”
In an effort to prove he meant business, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) stacked the Republican side of the deck with lawyers. Of its 7 GOP members, the lone exception is Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (Ga.).
It’s remaining Republican members are Reps. Peter Roskam (Ill.), Jim Jordan (Ohio), Susan Brooks (Ind.), Mike Pompeo (Kan.) and Martha Roby (Ala.), according to The Hill.
“This investigation is about getting answers for the families of the victims and for the American people,” Boehner said in a statement. “These members have each demonstrated a commitment to this goal, and I have confidence that they will lead a serious, fact-based inquiry. As I have expressed to each of them, I expect this committee to carry out an investigation worthy of the American lives lost in Benghazi.”
In December, Gowdy reaffirmed his desire to have Clinton testify, according to The Hill, which reported:
Clinton, who is widely expected to run for president in 2016, was the nation’s top diplomat at the time of the attack and has been repeatedly chastised by the GOP over her handling of the episode that left four Americans dead.
A second appearance on Capitol Hill about Benghazi would be catnip for political operatives, Republican politicians and cable television producers.
Clinton is “a witness that we would like to talk to,” Gowdy said. “I cannot tell you when.”
Watch Fox News host Megyn Kelly’s interview with Gowdy.
(h/t: Western Journalism Center)