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DEMS DIVIDED ON BENGHAZI
Send five? send none? send one? With House Speaker John Boehner expected to announce the Republican members of the newly established Benghazi Select Committee today, House Democrats are fretting over a politically crucial call on whether to boycott the panel’s investigation or participate on some level. The turmoil among Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and her leadership team who meet with rank and file members today roiled-on after the House voted 232 – 186 Thursday to establish the committee charged with launching a comprehensive investigation aimed at answering lingering questions about what happened before, during and after the terror attack that killed four Americans in 2012.
[Immediately after the vote, Pelosi accused Republicans of “unending eagerness to exploit” the Benghazi attack, adding, “our nation deserves better than yet another deeply partisan and political review.” Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., who will head the panel, said, “This resolution equips the select committee with the scope and tools necessary for the seriousness of this investigation. We are charged with a clear mission: uncover all the facts and provide answers to the American public.”]
If they stay away, who’ll protect Hillary? - WaPo: “Democrats are split over whether to boycott the select committee, which will have a 7-5 Republican edge in membership. They are concerned that their participation would grant legitimacy to what they believe will be a partisan forum. But they also worry that if they avoid it they won’t have the chance to counter GOP claims and defend potential witnesses.” Read that: who’s got then-Secretary of State and current 2016 frontrunner Hillary Clinton’s back? Another option, being floated by top Pelosi ally Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., is to empanel a single Democrat. Whatever choice Pelosi and company make will be a strategic gamble as the politically charged hearings pick up this summer, into the midterms, and beyond.