Democrats are not going to let go of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy's comments about the partisan aims of the Benghazi Committee. Not only not going to let go, but actively using them as a bludgeon. As NBC's Andrea Mitchell is quoted at the beginning of a new ad from Hillary Clinton
, "Republican Kevin McCarthy [said] the committee investigating Benghazi and Clinton's emails was created to destroy her candidacy." (Video below the fold.) That is what McCarthy said, and how the Benghazi Committee has been acting, so it would be political malpractice of Democrats to ignore it.
In addition to the ad from the Clinton campaign, House Democrats are on the offensive. On Monday, the Benghazi Committee Democrats released portions of the committee's interview with Cheryl Mills, who was chief of staff at the State Department under Clinton, pushing back against misleading Republican leaks from her interview. They also laid out their rationale for releasing the full transcript of the Mills interview if Republicans don't respond adequately to their concerns. That's not all:
One option would be to file an ethics complaint alleging that the Gowdy panel’s taxpayer-funded work was a misappropriation because its essentially political in nature.
Democrats are also considering having a rank-and-file colleague file a privileged resolution that could call for a rebuke of McCarthy’s comments or even a disbanding of the Benghazi panel. Such a move would force GOP lawmakers to vote multiple times this month on the California Republican’s standing, given his likely succession to House Speaker John A. Boehner’s (R-Ohio) job.
Clinton is set to appear before the committee on October 22, after delays
by House Benghazi Czar Trey Gowdy. That means that Republican leaking and grandstanding will be at fever pitch, and Democrats will have plenty to push back against. It was so considerate of Kevin McCarthy to sum up what the Benghazi Committee is all about just in time to be useful, and no amount of him trying to put the cat back in the bag with statements
about how "The mission of the Select Committee on Benghazi is to find the truth—Period" will let him unsay what he said.