The House Republicans have once again handed Hillary Clinton and her campaign yet another gift yesterday. Rep. Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) made some damaging remarks that the House Select Committee on Benghazi is out to ruin the career of the former secretary of State politically.
Appearing on the First News In The Morning With Ed Keeler Show, Rep. Hanna (R-N.Y.) said he agrees with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA.), who handed Clinton a political gift last month when he tied her falling poll numbers to the committee investigating the 2012 terror attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
“Sometimes the biggest sin you can commit in D.C. is to tell the truth,” Hanna said on the Keeler in the Morning radio show in New York. “This may not be politically correct, but I think that there was a big part of this investigation that was designed to go after people, and an individual, Hillary Clinton.”
“After what Kevin McCarthy said, it’s difficult to accept at least a part of it was not,” Hanna continued. “I think that’s the way Washington works. But you’d like to expect more from a committee that’s spent millions of dollars and tons of time.”
The Clinton campaign seized on the remarks, saying that the former secretary of State would still testify in front of the committee as scheduled next week, even though “the inquiry has zero credibility left.”
“House Republicans aren’t even shy anymore about admitting that the Benghazi Committee is a partisan farce,” Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon said in a statement.
“After failing to produce any new information on the tragic 2012 attacks at Benghazi despite a 17-month investigation, John Boehner has reportedly urged the committee to shift its focus to Hillary Clinton’s emails in an ongoing effort to try to hurt her politically. Hillary Clinton will still attend next week’s hearing, but at this point, Trey Gowdy’s inquiry has zero credibility left.”
Just this past weekend a former investigator with the House Select Committee on Benghazi is accusing the Republican-led panel of carrying out a politically motivated investigation targeting former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton instead of the thorough and objective fact-finding mission it was set up to pursue.
Maj. Bradley Podliska, an intelligence officer in the Air Force Reserve who describes himself as a conservative Republican, told CNN that the committee trained its sights almost exclusively on Clinton after the revelation last March that she used a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state. That new focus flipped a broad based probe of the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi in 2012, into what Podliska described as “a partisan investigation.
The committee flatly denied Podliska’s accusations with a statement they released on Sunday after his interview with Jake Tapper aired.
A committee spokesperson “vigorously” denied Podliska’s allegations about why he was fired and defended the objectivity of the panel’s investigation.
“We are confident that the facts and evidence give no support to the wild imagination fueling these and any future allegations, and the Committee will vigorously defend itself against such allegations. The Committee will not be blackmailed into a monetary settlement for a false allegation made by a properly terminated former employee,” the committee spokesperson, who declined to be named, told CNN in a statement.
Has the damage to the committee already been done?
Comments by Congressmen McCarthy and Hanna along with Maj. Podliska ‘s allegations might have caused the committee to be seen as a political witch hunt. There is still a chance that the Benghazi Committee can get back on track by Oct. 22nd when former Secretary of State Clinton appears in front of the group.
They need to ask good and solid questions without grandstanding during the hearing or they will have lost all credibility. There is no doubt that Clinton has a great deal to explain about her emails and about how the Benghazi killings happened.
But if Chairman Gowdy and his committee are not on their best behavior, acting professional, looking for just the facts and not attacking Clinton they will lose the moral high ground. My guess is that the committee will grandstand and any of the good work they will have done up to this point will be gone.