Kevin McCarthy catches Benghazi! Fever


On Monday I saw this headline: Benghazi panel now longest congressional investigation — longer than even Watergate, Iran-Contra, and the GOP’s previous witch hunt into Whitewater.

BenghaziThis is despite the fact that, prior to Rep. Trey Gowdy taking the reins of  the House Select Committee on Benghazi, there had already been seven Previous Investigations: the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, the House Committee on Armed Services, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the House Committee on the Judiciary, and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.  These committees, in addition to the independent Accountability Review Board, have issued nine reports on the attacks.

On Wednesday the Beltway media exploded with an unforced error admission against interest by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who hopes to succeed John Boehner as Speaker of the House next week, on Sean Hannity’s show that the House Select Committee on Benghazi is just what we always knew it was, a partisan political device to attack Hillary Clinton and to attempt to undermine her campaign with a never ending investigation into something that has already been investigated to death:

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?” McCarthy asked. “But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought.” “I give you credit for that,” said Hannity. “I’ll give you credit where credit is due.”

But wait, there’s more! McCarthy intends to Benghazi! Benghazi! Benghazi! Planned Parenthood in the same manner. GOP congressional committees only exist to provide grist for the Mighty Wurlitzer of the right-wing noise machine of the conservative media entertainment complex:

This is what we’re going to do, Sean, and we’re not going to be able to do it alone: We’re going to put a strategy together. Just as we do a select committee on Planned Parenthood, so we go out across the country, and they see. The president won’t even watch those videos. The Democrats won’t watch those videos. We need America to watch those videos. And you know what? We need your help as well.

Steve Benen writes, GOP leader accidentally tells the truth about Benghazi committee:

Michael Kinsley once said a political gaffe occurs when a politician accidentally tells the truth. By this measure, the man who’s likely to become Speaker of the House next month made an important mistake last night.

First, I’m reasonably sure “untrustable” isn’t a word.

Second, the ostensible point of the Select Committee on Benghazi was to examine a terrorist attack that left four Americans dead in Libya, not to create an election tool that can affect a presidential candidate’s poll numbers.

Note, McCarthy sees the committee as a legitimate accomplishment of the Republican Congress, not because it’s uncovered relevant details about an act of terrorism, but because Hillary Clinton’s “numbers are dropping.” This, in his mind, is evidence of the GOP majority using its power effectively – by using a supposedly non-partisan investigatory vehicle to embarrass a Democrat with dubious allegations.

It’s almost as if the House Majority Leader assumed he was among friends, dropped his guard momentarily, and admitted out loud what Republicans are only supposed to say in private.

There was no real reason to create this committee, and the panel itself no longer serves any legitimate purpose. McCarthy’s unexpected candor was welcome – it was, to be sure, surprising to see him make such a concession on national television – but it served as a timely reminder that the Benghazi investigation that no longer focuses on Benghazi is now little more than a taxpayer-financed farce.

McCarthy’s admission is still reverberating in Washington today. The Hill reports, Republicans try to clean up McCarthy’s Benghazi mess (is that what the kids are calling it these days?) Congressman Chaffetz: McCarthy should apologize for Benghazi remark. Weeper of the House Boehner forced to defend Benghazi panel. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi threatens to end Dem participation in Benghazi probe. And the Senate Dems call on Boehner to disband Benghazi panel.

And the target of this GOP political witch hunt, Hillary Clinton slams McCarthy’s ‘distressing’ Benghazi remarks:

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Wednesday slammed House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) remarks this week about the committee investigating the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya.

“I knew the ambassador that we lost in Benghazi,” Clinton shot back in an excerpt of an interview airing on MSNBC, referring to the late U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.

“Along with him, we lost three other brave Americans who were representing us in a very dangerous part of the world,” she said of the attack.

“When I hear a statement like that, which demonstrates unequivocally that this was always meant to be a partisan, political exercise, I feel like it does a grave disservice and dishonors not just the memory of the four that we lost but of everybody who has served our country.”

* * *

A spokesman for Clinton’s campaign immediately highlighted McCarthy’s remark on Twitter on Tuesday night and her campaign released a video Wednesday blasting the “partisan attack.”

I warned you that Kevin McCarthy has a thin resume and little experience in a leadership position. He is demonstrating that he is not ready for prime time by stepping in a pile of shit of his own making. He is certainly not ready to be Speaker of the House, third in line of succession to the presidency.

The House GOP leadership elections are Oct. 8. Republican should seriously consider finding someone more experienced and capable in leadership.


  1. Everyone. EVERYONE. Should now refuse to appear before any House committee on anything related to their Bengahzi obsession. EVERYONE who could possibly say anything already has multiple times. Done. The can have hearings and yap to each other.

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