Skip to comments.GOP defies Boehner on special Benghazi panel
Posted on 05/14/2013 3:56:13 AM PDT by markomalley
House Republican members are defying Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and five committee chairmen by endorsing a measure that would set up a special panel to investigate the deadly attacks in Benghazi, Libya.
A growing number of members on the committees with jurisdiction over the Benghazi matter Intelligence, Judiciary, Oversight and Government Reform, Armed Services and Foreign Affairs have signed onto Rep. Frank Wolfs (R-Va.) resolution.
Boehner and the chairmen of those committees do not support the legislation. Instead, they have worked together to investigate the Obama administrations handling of the Sept. 11, 2012 assault.
Despite that resistance, Wolf has garnered a sizable majority of the GOP Conference as co-sponsors since introducing the measure in January. It has 146 GOP co-sponsors, with more than 80 Republicans backing it over the last month.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) has also embraced a special committee and attempted to pry the GOP-led House to schedule a vote. That would put pressure, McCain has pointed out, on the Senate to act.
According to a review of the House co-sponsors, a majority of GOP lawmakers on the Armed Services, Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees and half of the GOP lawmakers on the Foreign Affairs panel have endorsed the Wolf resolution.
Former Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) signed on to the resolution Monday, while former Homeland Security Committee Chairman Pete King (R-N.Y.) endorsed it during a television interview. Late last week, former Judiciary Committee Chairman James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis.) became a co-sponsor.
Two of the Intelligence Committees 12 GOP lawmakers, Reps. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) and Tom Rooney (Fla.), have signed on.
Not one Democrat has co-sponsored the Wolf resolution.
President Obama on Monday dismissed GOP charges that his administration covered up the truth about the attacks in Benghazi, calling them a politically motivated sideshow that does dishonor to the nations diplomats.
He added: The whole issue of talking points, frankly, throughout this process has been a sideshow. The fact that this keeps getting churned out, frankly, has a lot to do with political motivations.
Wolf told The Hill in an interview, I think you want to bring together the very best minds, you want to focus like a laser beam ... bring an outside counsel to coordinate, direct and unify ... bring it together in 90 days.
Should Boehner not seek a vote on Wolfs resolution, the Virginia congressman revealed he might have several opportunities to offer the measure as an amendment on the House floor during the appropriations bill process in June.
I would look for a way to offer an amendment on the floor. Appropriations bills are coming. There will be opportunities, Wolf explained.
Detractors say that creating a select committee would be counterproductive to the work that has already been undertaken by the five committees of jurisdiction.
They maintain that the 90-day timeline would allow for administration stonewalling, and with only 19 members on the committee 10 of which would be the committee chairmen and ranking members of the panels with jurisdiction said it would be difficult to appoint standout questioners to the select panel.
On Sunday, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) dismissed the idea of a creating a select committee: ... it needs to be investigated. Our committee can investigate.
Last Thursday, Wolf sent a stinging letter to Boehner, citing the support for his select committee cause the day after Oversight and Government Reform held a high-profile hearing on Benghazi.
The revelations at [last weeks] hearing have raised serious questions about the administrations efforts to respond to the Americans under fire at the annex in Benghazi. What remains to be seen is whether the House will be complicit in that failure, or if we will pursue the truth wherever it may take us to ensure that we continue to deserve the sacrifices made by the men and women who serve our country, Wolf wrote.
Boehner last week remained firm in his commitment to follow regular order and allow the committees with jurisdiction to continue to share the workload.
He highlighted the Oversight and Government Reform Committees performance in questioning State Department whistle-blower Gregory Hicks.
I thought that Chairman Issa and the members of the Government Reform and Oversight Committee ... did a fabulous job in a very long day of hearings of eliciting more information that, frankly, we havent had for the last eight months, Boehner said.
A senior House Republican aide said, It should be pretty clear after last week that there is already a committee leading the overarching investigation, and that is Chairman Issas committee. After last weeks hearing, there is growing concern, even among members whove advocated the creation of a select committee in the past, that throwing all this to a select committee now instead of letting Issas panel continue to do its work would actually impede the investigation.
Since the hearing last week, seven House Republicans have formally co-sponsored Wolfs legislation, including Deputy Whip Tom Cole (Okla.).
On Monday afternoon, Issas committee sent out a notice that it would be taking testimony from Ambassador Tom Pickering and retired Adm. Michael Mullen, who led the State Department investigation on Benghazi. Issa gave notice during recent media appearances that he might subpoena additional witnesses. Former Vice President Cheney last week suggested the GOP should subpoena former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
The scandal broke not because of ANY Repub Establishment did anything, it was due to Levin's persistence and pressuring the right person.
whatever happened to fast ‘n furious?????
my guess is the same will happen here...
it will just go away..
He’s definitely trying to distract from Benghazi, but I think his call for an investigation of the IRS means something like the “investigation” they did of Benghazi...you know, the one that ended by saying it was nobody’s fault, nothing happened, or maybe a couple of flunkies dropped the ball but, heck, that’s to be expected...
He doesn’t want a real investigation of anything, believe me. The only type of investigation he wants is something that he hopes will contain and suppress the information.
I believe some part of Fast n’ Furious has made it to the courts, but it seems to be bogged down there.
We should take our time with these investigations....draw them OUT!
Not one among em worth a thimble of spit
Did anyone see this?
Was everyone beging played?
Or,is this more disinformation?
They're looking out for their own asses and no one else like good republicans.
I support regular order and Issa. Let the process continue,
Those seeking limelight must be disregarded while the layers within layers are uncovered. Speed is not beneficial to a through process
I went to the link for just a sec, (only because of you).
FWIW, I don’t believe hardly anything WND posts.
Reading the headline, I don’t buy that at all.
Yes, but McC and Boehner are ULTIMATELY the result of the collective decisions made by Republican primary voters in two states and then their party membership in both houses. Does not endear one to the wisdom of Republican primary voters
Now why do you suppose this is the case? Usually, the Democrats make a big fuss when there is no co-sponsor. Could it be that they are all hiding under rocks?
After all, the Democrats did hide the fact that Gregory Hicks is a registered Democrat who voted twice for Obama.
Good for Wolf! Boehner plays golf too much with Obama, do you not think?
It is my understanding that a Select Committee is under no time constraints and can even span from one Congress to the next. A select committee exists until it completes the task that it was formed to do.
My thoughts exactly.
McCain et al are jealous. They are missing out on the glory.
They crave being part of the action.
You express my concerns. Special committee if too narrowly defined could overlook important information.
Freepers should read this paragraph at least twice and consider who would be on and who be left off a Select Committee.
“They maintain that the 90-day timeline would allow for administration stonewalling, and with only 19 members on the committee 10 of which would be the committee chairmen and ranking members of the panels with jurisdiction said it would be difficult to appoint standout questioners to the select panel.”
Even on Issa’s committee he is no better than the third best questioner. He would get two spots on a Select Commmittee and he would take one of them. Same deal on four other committees. We would get chairmen, maybe good, maybe bad and one maybe competent or just senior member of each committee.
Frankly, just letting Issa take the lead may not be a bad idea.
I've built a Benghazi Timeline - it could make its own post... feel free...
Our military is ready to rescue the Ambassador and his
staff, but are given the order to "Stand Down" by Obama.
The Blame Game Begins
Team Obama/Hillary race into action within 24 hours
blaming, naming and arresting an innocent filmmaker
while apologizing to violent Muslims.
The coverup, whitewash and media blackout begin when
their lies fall apart.
In stark contrast to her rush to blame and pass the buck,
Hillary feigns illness, flees the country and drags her feet
Supporters squeal "It was so looonnngg ago".
"But what difference does it make?!?!"
How it should end...
“I ask Chairman Issa how many people have gone to jail as a result of his investigation?”
I greatly appreciate your dedication to getting out the truth to people in general, to to your ping list in particular. Please keep me on your list.
But we here at FR pride ourselves on our fidelity to the Constitution and to the separation of powers that it codifies. In that light, Congress is the legislative branch, not the judicial branch. Congressional investigations should not have “jail” as a goal. Indeed, not even the judicial branch should have that as their goal. Their goal should be justice - which may include incarceration, but may just as well have vindication and liberty. Indeed, if pure justice is not the goal then we have a problem.
I would be appalled if Issa’s investigations had as their goal “jail” for their objects. Suppose the democrats controlled congress, could I sit back if one of Pelosi’s committee chairmen sought “jail” for a conservative? I should hope not! I would oppose it, not just because it was against my political ideas, but also because it was against the Constitution. The very idea that a congressional committee investigation could result in jail is totally unconstitutional and totally against my view of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Let’s be clear, many of the people who have testified before Issa’s committee deserve jail (as far as I can tell), but Issa, his committee, and the congress must not become instruments of justice in the strict sense of the word. That violates the Constitution. In their legislative oversight they must be instruments of truth, which should then be used for legislation. Findings can and should be turned over to the Judicial branch as needed, but Issa and his committee have no judicial functions whatsoever.
On FR I have seen a lot of positive things about Issa, but I have also seen many negative things. Most of the negative comments have centered on why he did not DO SOMETHING about the corruption. Yes, why did Issa not just send the police in to Holder’s office and have him arrested? Why? Why did he not send them in to arrest Obama? Issa is a legislator, not an executive or a judge. We do not have a form of government open to coup d’etat and putsch. At least until now, and we must resist with all of our strength any move toward that form of “justice.”
Even impeachment deals with removal from office, and not ordinary judicial matters. Should the House of Representatives impeach any political office holder and the Senate convict him, what sentence can they give him? Life in prison? Death? A fine of $50,000? As I understand it, none of those. Only removal from office.
Issa is doing a great job, and we need to take courage from that, and give courage to him and his colleagues as well.
I hope you're right. But McCain makes me nervous.
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