COMMENTARY | The spin that the House Benghazi select committee is nothing but a Republican witch hunt took a hit when two Democrats at the center of the scandal lent their support to the investigation.
“The case against a Select Committee investigation of Benghazi took a hit when former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell agreed that the investigation is a good idea. Panetta was Defense Secretary at the time of the Benghazi attack; Morell was Deputy CIA Director at that time.
“Speaking at a press conference, Panetta said there needs to be an investigation to lay out the full story to the public. ‘The problem has been sometimes bits and pieces of information keep coming out’ that raise more questions, he explained. Panetta added that he hopes House Democrats participate.”
This not only suggests that Panetta and Morell feel they have nothing to hide, but they will be prepared to cooperate fully with the investigation that will be led by committee chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy, a former prosecutor with an impressive record of convictions. This puts remarkable pressure on House Democrats to cooperate as well, actually stopping Nancy Pelosi’s proposed boycott of the committee.
And then what about Hillary Clinton who, as former secretary of state, was the primary figure in the scandal surrounding the murder of four Americans, including ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens? Yelling, “What difference does it make?” is not going to cut it this time. She is going to have to answer some uncomfortable questions under oath in advance of a possible run for the presidency in 2016. This will hardly be an auspicious beginning of what many in the Democratic Party hope will be a Clinton restoration.
Of course Clinton may solve the problem by declining to run. She has every incentive to let the cup pass from her lips, most of all being the possibility that she could be humiliated by another defeat. In any case her immediate problem is getting her story straight concerning Benghazi.