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Sneaky Leakers: Why House Republicans Won’t Release Blumenthal Transcript

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Sneaky Leakers: Why House Republicans Won’t Release Blumenthal Transcript

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Speaker Boehner meets with Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who is to serve as chairman of the select committee to investigate the events surrounding the 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi. (SpeakerBoehner/Flickr)

Over the past several days since Sidney Blumenthal testified before the House Select Committee on Benghazi, a series of highly selective and sometimes distorted bits from that hearing, which was held behind closed doors, have leaked to the Washington media. Blumenthal, his attorney James Cole, and Democratic members of the committee have all requested the release of the entire transcript of his deposition, so far without success.

The committee chair, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), has hidden behind the excuse that Blumenthal shouldn’t be treated “differently” from other witnesses who have testified. To call that objection insincere is to put it very mildly.

Although Blumenthal responded to every question and provided every document requested, including numerous emails he sent to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, he has in fact been treated far worse than any other witness called by the select committee.

This ill treatment began when the committee issued a subpoena to him — unlike others who were permitted to appear voluntarily. It intensified when the committee leaked word of that subpoena to the press before it was served. And it continues as his words are misused to smear him by anonymous committee staff and members. They haven’t inflicted such punitive actions on anyone else. (Naturally the Washington press corps, courageous watchdogs of democracy, have supinely lapped up the leaks without demanding the full context. If the Clintons did something like this, they’d bark and growl all night.)

Today, Cole sent Gowdy a letter on behalf of Blumenthal, with footnotes, citing “numerous leaks about his emails and testimony, many of which have given an inaccurate account of what occurred in the deposition. It is unfair to my client, to the work of the Committee, and to the public to allow this inaccurate record to persist.” Cole quotes press accounts that cite specific emails given by Blumenthal to the committee but not released, and notes that the unnamed sources include GOP committee members and “Republicans privy to the Benghazi committee’s strategy.”

Of course, as Cole notes, this is all “inappropriate and contrary to the rules of the Committee.” He rightly complains that the leaks are “distorting the truth by mischaracterizing facts and circumstances.” He concludes by appealing, rather optimistically, to Gowdy’s sense of decency:

“Mr. Chairman, you have stated that you want to run this Select Committee in a fair and even-handed way. In light of these leaks, the only way to achieve that is to release the full transcript right away. Mr. Blumenthal fully cooperated with the Select Committee, and answered every question asked. The public deserves to know the whole truth about what happened during his deposition, and fairness demands it.”

What makes this episode darkly amusing to me is that when my article about Blumenthal and Benghazi appeared in Politico magazine on May 28, the select committee’s communications director, Jamal Ware, swiftly dispatched a letter asking that the editors either change or remove it – because I had asserted flatly that committee Republicans were leaking Clinton’s emails to media outlets.

The caption of Ware’s email was “Story withdrawal requested.” Indignantly, he wrote that I had “falsely and baselessly” accused the committee of leaking. According to him, my article offered those assertions “without factual basis,” and he “respectfully requested” that Politico take it down.

I wrote to Jamal Ware twice, explaining why I was sure that the Republicans had leaked those documents, posing several questions to him, and inviting him to issue a denial on the record. Discourteously but unsurprisingly, he never wrote back  – and, to their credit, Politico‘s editors never touched my article.

So while I wish I expected Gowdy to release the complete Blumenthal transcript, instead of dribbling out misleading leaks, I doubt that will happen. Decency requires character — and the Benghazi committee chairman is behaving like a bully, a phony, and a sneak. He seems to fear releasing a transcript that could expose what a silly, pointless, wasteful fiasco his “investigation” has become.

Right now, Gowdy is getting away with conduct that should put him in jeopardy of censure, at the very least, because too many in the House leadership — and the Washington press corps — share those flaws.

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Joe Conason

A highly experienced journalist, author and editor, Joe Conason is the editor-in-chief of The National Memo, founded in July 2011. He was formerly the executive editor of the New York Observer, where he wrote a popular political column for many years. His columns are distributed by Creators Syndicate and his reporting and writing have appeared in many publications around the world, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, The New Yorker, The New Republic, The Nation, and Harpers.

Since November 2006, he has served as editor of The Investigative Fund, a nonprofit journalism center, where he has assigned and edited dozens of award-winning articles and broadcasts. He is also the author of two New York Times bestselling books, The Hunting of the President (St. Martins Press, 2000) and Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth (St. Martins Press, 2003).

Currently he is working on a new book about former President Bill Clinton's life and work since leaving the White House in 2001. He is a frequent guest on radio and television, including MSNBC's Morning Joe, and lives in New York City with his wife and two children.

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74 Comments

  1. Steve H June 19, 2015

    Imagine that, Gowdy playing politics with the committee activities, why I never expected that to happen. He is just doing what his boss tells him to do. Gowdy is just the meat puppet for Boehner.

    Reply
    1. JPHALL June 19, 2015

      Where are all the Benghazi trolls? Hey Nike, Itsfun and the other trolls. What is up?

      Reply
      1. Steve H June 20, 2015

        I dunno. oh well.

        Reply
      2. Independent1 June 20, 2015

        What I’d like to know is where was Boehner and a lot of the GOP politicos taking part in this Benghazi fiasco when there were 13 Benghazi’s during Georgie and Dickie boys’ administration and nary a one of these chicken littles ever even muttered a word as to why more than 70 people died during those 8 years in those 13 attacks.

        And especially why, 3 of the 13 attacks occurred at one consulate, Karachi, Pakistan over a period of 5 years with Georgie and Dickie and their administration having done not one thing to beef up security; such that 18 people died in those 3 attacks including a diplomat just like Stevens. Yet not one Republican that’s now clammoring about Benghazi ever questioned anyone in the Bush Administration is to why they allowed all those people die (far more than 4) without doing a thing!!!

        And keep in mind that during the Reagan and the administration of the 2 Bushes, an average of more than 70 Americans died during each of their terms in an average of 10 deadly attacks per term. While under Obama, there has only been ONE deadly attack with 4 people being killed. The last 6 years under Obama have been the safest 6 years for Americans working in our overseas government offices in at least the past 40 plus years!!

        Reply
        1. mike June 20, 2015

          Under Obama ISIS has taken over large parts of Syria and Iraq, murdered thousands of innocent people and Obama has dithered. He said he would destroy ISIS but has done little to stop it, has admitted he has no plan to do what he promised to do to ISIS. Is now reluctantly being forced to put American troops back in Iraq that he refused to keep troops there several years ago on a stupid excuse that now seems to have disappeared and is not necessary now.
          PS. number attacks and deaths is greater than you try to claim under Obama. You also ignore the fact that no Ambassador was killed under Bush, unlike Obama.

          Reply
          1. jmprint June 20, 2015

            Oh mike get over your blaming the President, so far he is doing better then ANY of your retard (non intending to offend the mentally challenged) republican clowns. You lie and expect for people to believe you, lie, lie, lie. The facts that Independent give you go right over your head. You know darn well ISIS the the after birth of Cheney’s war and Benghazi is just a a ploy. A total waste of time and money.

            Reply
          2. mike June 20, 2015

            I see another uninformed post from you, prove me wrong, retard.

            Reply
          3. Independent1 June 20, 2015

            Why don’t you refresh our memories here lowlife – just how you sleep at night knowing that you spend your days here posting one lie after another. Remember, LOWLIFE, and I call you that, because GOD hates LIARS as much as I DO!! In fact in Revelations he made it clear THAT ALL LIARS WILL DIE IN THE FIRE!!! SO I HOPE YOU’RE READY FOR BURNING IN HELL TO ETERNITY!!!!!!!

            Reply
          4. mike June 20, 2015

            LMAO!!! Wrong again, more of your imbecilic remarks, I see.

            Reply
          5. plc97477 June 20, 2015

            We need a new word meaning slack-jawed stupid and completely unethical to characterize the gotp.

            Reply
          6. BillP June 20, 2015

            As usual you write comment that is always blaming President Obama for everything that has gone wrong in the world. Your comment “You also ignore the fact that no Ambassador was killed under Bush, unlike Obama.” may be true but you tend to forget that nearly 3,000 people were killed in one day under President GW Bush including a childhood friend. How conveniently you fail to mention 9/11 plus the American soldiers that died fighting in Iraq. Benghazi was a terrible event but it pales when compared to 9/11.

            Reply
          7. mike June 20, 2015

            Obama deserves the blame for the growth of ISIS, remember he said they were a JV team. He also said Al Qaeda on the run, leadership decimated, he was later proven wrong with Al Qaeda even more active in 10-12 countries.
            As to your ignorant claim the Bush was solely responsible for 911 shows your how ignorant you are to the facts of history. I bet you even think the recession was solely Bush’s fault also!!! If so, you are dumber than I thought.
            For the record, Obama is a dismal failure from domestic policies to foreign relations.

            Reply
          8. BillP June 22, 2015

            In your usual arrogant and negative manner you seem to believe that attacking makes your claim creditable. W was the president when the 9/11 sneak attack took place, unlike President Truman W didn’t believe the buck stopped with him. Somehow you low information trolls want to blame anyone but W for 9/11, he ignored the intelligence reports that warned of Bin Laden planning an attack on the US. You failed to mention hat facts of history that were ignored but that’s typical when you have nothing to offer.
            As for the recession W does own a large part of the responsibility with starting 2 wars that were funded off budget while cutting taxes especially with the wealthy getting a 3.9% tax reduction. W showed his wonderful business acumen by reducing income while increasing costs, show yes he deserves a major part of the blame for the recession.

            Reply
          9. mike June 22, 2015

            Even Clarke’s deputy, who went to work for NBC as one of their experts, told congress that they thought the attack would happen overseas. They did not know how, where or when we would be attacked. I am not surprised how little you know on the subject.
            As to recession. Yes he was part of the problem but not the large part as you claim.
            http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/20/business/worldbusiness/20iht-prexy.4.16321064.html?pagewanted=all

            Your ignorance on the stock market is breathtaking. The reason the market has been so good has nothing to do with Obama. The Reserve printed trillions of dollars, applied zero interest rates, the Fed’s guarantee of the commercial paper market, the Treasury’s guarantee of money-market funds, and the bailout of AIG helped. Purchasing bonds and mortgage-backed securities to push long-term rates down. by pushing bond yields down to very low levels, the Fed has forced people seeking a return to plunge into riskier assets, like stocks. Plus the high profits allowed companies to buy back their stock. the Fed. reserve low interest rate allowed companies gain access to lower-cost credit, which has freed up cash.
            Obama has done squat.

            Reply
          10. BillP June 23, 2015

            What I really enjoy about you right wing trolls is that you can only write negative comments. Anything that has gone well during President Obama’s administration was not due to anything he did but everything bad is his fault. All the things you wrote about the Fed and Treasury did happen but it was while Obama is in office. What did the business genius W do to stimulate the economy? Lower the tax income of the Federal Gov’t while increases its debt while getting the country into 2 wars that cost over 1 trillion dollars. I love how you economic geniuses claim that Obama is keeping the corporate tax rate too high yet corporations are recording large profits during his administration. You oversimplify how the stock market works, there are the issues you mention plus how is the world economy going, how is the dollar doing (it’s been doing pretty good for the last few years), unemployment is down, the housing market has improved since W left office. Most people are not investing in very risky assets, most money is going into stock mutual funds, ETF’s and index funds. You forgot to mention how Obama bailed out GM too.

            As for your comment on 9/11 you try to get nasty with your comments but W was sitting in a school reading to children while the country was under attack, great leadership. Your comment “They did not know how, where or when we would be attacked.” is a great comment on W’s administration. They didn’t know anything, speaks volumes for their competency.
            W was more than just a part of the problem in causing the recession. He was left with a surplus that his economic policies turned into a large debt, saw the stock market plunge, unemployment rise sharply and the dollar drop in value. Unemployment went from 4

            Reply
          11. mike June 24, 2015

            I sure didn’t oversimplify the stock market caused by the fed’s zero interest rate that allowed companies to borrow money cheaply and to use at their leisure. I didn’t oversimplify corporations being mean and lean producing large profits from far less costs, lower wages and employees.
            Unemployment is far from down. Any person with half a brain knows the U3 numbers aren’t even close to the real unemployment. U6 is the better gauge that economist look at. How many millions have quit looking for jobs?? Participation rate still bad.
            Sure employment is looking better but low wages and fewer hours don’t even come close to past recoveries. Housing has had a good run but watch how increased rates that are coming will effect the affordability factor.
            Again, Obama has done squat for the economy, in fact, it is his policies(epa, massive new regulations taking billions out of the economy) that has caused this snail pace recovery..
            As to 911 you can keep the old left wing crap flying about it being all 43 but knowledgeable people know differently.
            “Nasty comments” from me, only in your sissy brain.

            Tomorrow or Monday are going to very interesting.

            Reply
          12. BillP June 25, 2015

            little mikey-boy you most certainly did oversimplify your vast misunderstanding of the stock market, you totally ignored the effect of the global economy on the market – see the current Greece crisis. Additionally the US dollar increasing in value versus the Euro, Pound, Yen, etc. in the last few years had an effect on the market. You are so arrogant that you even supply another reason the market has done so well during the Obama administration, corporations are making record profits due to the reasons you listed. Isn’t this the way of capitalism and the free market?
            As for the U3 & U6 numbers, the media always has always reported the U3 numbers so I guess the media is half-brained according to your wisdom. I also included the U6 #’s since other trolls like you have claimed that the U6 #’s were reported when W as in office, of course this is pure bs. Using either the U3 or U6 #’s the rate of unemployment has gone down since Obama came into office and was left to clean up the disaster that W’s wonderful policies created.
            The mortgage rates have been static for over a year now so they should be going up, how much no one knows. Housing values have been increasing in the last few years and new housing is improving but then again President Obama had nothing to do with this.
            As for your squat comment – what massive regulations has he enacted, saying something doesn’t make it real. As for the EPA I guess you would love to let companies run unchecked in how they deal with the environment. Let’s have GE pollute the Hudson River again or have Coal companies not have to have safety procedures in place or have Chemical companies dump their waste into our rivers.
            As for W you resort generalities like all of you right wing trolls but he as in charge when 9/11 took place but it was probably Obama’s fault.
            You are a typical right wing troll an angry, nasty, negative male so you will continue to post your negative only comments. Your bile seeps though your comments.

            Reply
          13. mike June 25, 2015

            U3 numbers are used for dumb downed people like you.
            Yes. you used the U6 but U6 is much closer to the REAL unemployment, heck Krugman claims U6 is a closer number but he looks at both. What you can’t comprehend is the fact that many have quit looking for job or the fact that the medium income jobs are gone. Jobs have increased but those being hired are low income and part time. Full time jobs are almost nonexistent.
            Regulations.

            http://www.forbes.com/sites/waynecrews/2014/09/10/hairball-the-cost-of-federal-regulation-to-the-u-s-economy/

            http://www.nam.org/Data-and-Reports/Reports/Cost-of-Federal-Regulations/The-Cost-of-Federal-Regulation/

            Obama is the most anti-business president ever. His policies have caused uncertainty, which has forced businesses not to expand. When polled why they are being cautious they say Fed. regulations and the uncertainty Obama’s policies.

            As to your stupid W comment, not worth a reply.

            Still got than sissy little mind, don’t you.

            Reply
          14. BillP June 26, 2015

            I just love it when write your angry comments. I list both the U3 & U6 numbers in my last 2 comments but I guess your retention is as good as your bs arguments. Of course you give the typical ignorant reply, they are low paying and part time, yes every one of the 6+ million jobs created are low paying and part time. Typical troll misspeak.
            For an anti-business president they have flourished in the last 6 years, record profits. You keep saying Obama’s policies and regulations has hindered business growth. I guess GDP growth in 20 of the last 25 quarters would be proof of that. I guess further proof of Obama’s ineffectiveness would be that consumer spending is increasing, up 0.9% in May, personal income increased 0.5%, retail sales increased 1.2% and housing sales jumped 5.1%. For the last 12 months spending at retailers is up 2.7%, all of these are such bad numbers. You can write whatever you want but the numbers prove you wrong.
            Ah little mikey boy can’t refute the W claim so tries to bs his way out. W was the president, he ignored intelligence data and nearly 3,000 people were killed on 9/11, yet you want to keep pushing the Benghazi bs.
            You need to come up with something better than sissy mind, it’s show a lack of creativity on your part.
            How was your day yesterday, get any interesting news little angry mikey.

            Reply
          15. mike June 27, 2015

            These might help you to understand what this so-called “job Boom” really looks like.

            http://money.cnn.com/2014/11/20/news/economy/america-part-time-jobs-poverty/

            http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/28/business/economy/recovery-has-created-far-more-low-wage-jobs-than-better-paid-ones.html

            http://www.wsj.com/articles/mortimer-zuckerman-the-full-time-scandal-of-part-time-america-1405291652

            As to retail sales. Keep dreaming, 2.7 means little

            http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-14/retail-sales-in-u-s-slumped-in-broad-based-december-retreat

            http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-retail-sales-down-0-6-in-february-1426163489

            http://sevensreport.com/retail-sales-were-bad/

            Again, you head is still where the sun doesn’t shine when it comes to W and 911. Roger Cressey, Clarke’s deputy said they thought it would happen overseas. If you read the Commission report they never had concrete information of when, where or how. They had bits and pieces but nothing that was a certain. They had reports of something big, but then they heard it was delayed. Only in your pea brain do you think that W should have put the US on alert without a scintilla of information. You ignore the fact that the airlines were warned.
            Here is more information that you want to ignore. In April 2000, a Niaz Khan, went to the Clinton FBI and warned them that he had been sent to prepare for flight school, he was polygraphed TWICE and passed. Nothing was done and he was sent back to the UK. So save me your stupid, ignorant crap it was all W’s fault.
            You can play Monday Night Quarterback all you want and try and blame W all you want but it won’t hold up under scrutiny.
            As to SCOTUS temporary decision, I never thought Robert’s would reverse his decision, I was hoping, but wasn’t holding my breath. Who did win?? The insurance industry, did you watch their stocks rise because they are now guaranteed billions more from the federal govt.-THE TAX PAYERS. Obama and democrats got in bed with them at the expense of the American people. Rates looking to rise up to 30% for next year, deductibles and out of pocket going higher. But you think it was great day. Now where are all those 30 million that were going to be insured? No, obamacare is another example of govt. controlling the masses, and redistribution of wealth. Americans were given no choice in their healthcare decision. What has been shown is a system still broken, we still have higher costs, fewer choices and loss of doctors. The so-called bending the cost curve Obama promised is bending the wrong way.
            But you can go on keeping your head where the sun doesn’t shine, it fits you.

            Reply
          16. Independent1 June 20, 2015

            You’re intentionally also forgetting lowlife, that Obama asked for Congress to grant him authorization to widen the war on ISIS months ago, and conveniently, the GOP has been sitting on that request for months!!! And a diplomat, the equivalent of Stevens, WAS KILLED IN THE 2006 ATTACK ON THE KARACHI CONSULATE; along with 5 other people!!!

            And as has been pointed out, Obama has not sat on any meeting from the CIA that warned him of imminent attacks on the homeland from al Qaeda DELIBERATELY LETTING THE 9/11 ATTACK HAPPEN LIKE DICKIE BOY AND GEORGIE BOY DID!! WHERE AS WAS POINTED OUT, 3,000 MORE AMERICANS WERE KILLED ALONG WITH THE MORE THAN 6,000 THAT HAVE DIED IN IRAQ AND AFGAHNISTAN IN WARS THAT SHOULD NEVER HAVE HAPPEDNED!!!

            THE BLAME FOR THE ISIS EXPANSION CLEARLY SITS IN THE LAPSE OF THE GOP WHO HAVE REFUSED TO BRING UP THE AUTHORIZATION OF ALLOWING OBAMA TO EXPAND THE WAR ON ISIS – NOT TO MENTION THAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, HAVE TIME AND AGAIN STATED IN POLLS – THEY DO NOT WANT THAT WAR EXPANDED WITH AMERICAN TROOPS ON THE GROUND!!!!!!

            Reply
          17. mike June 20, 2015

            First Obama doesn’t need authorization from Congress. The 2002 AMUF MILITARY AUTHORIZATION IS STILL IN EFFECT.
            The republicans said the WH draft authorization as too limited, any authorization for the use of military force must give our commanders the flexibility and authorities they need to succeed and protect our people.

            Then you have Pelosi who said “We hope to have bipartisan support for something that would “limit” the power of the President, but nonetheless protect the American people in a very strong way.” Pelosi then went on to say, “I don’t see any reason — in fact I actively support — repealing the 2002 authorization.” So save me your BS that the right is stopping Obama.
            OBAMA DOESN’T NEED AUTHORIZATION IT ALREADY EXIST.
            He is just trying to CYA. He dithered and ISIS has made great strides in territory.

            Secondly, the foreign service administrative officer David Foy was not equivalent to Ambassador Stevens.

            Now don’t forget you are the one that made the asinine statement that “Bush knew the attack was coming that day and left the WH to be safe.” What a asinine and stupid comment.

            Reply
          18. Independent1 June 20, 2015

            And there you go lying again!! Every time you distort the truth like Romney does with ever sentence he makes – you’re just lying one more time- God’s keeping track.

            The AMUF specifically says that military action is authorized ONLY IN EFFORTS RELATED TO CAPTURING THOSE WHO PERPETRATED THE 9/11 ATTACK ON America. The AMUF has absolutely nothing to do with fighting ISIS who had nothing to do with attacking American in 9/11. And the 2002 amendment of the AMUF on granted the White House the authority to try in a court of law those captured that had participated the 9/11 attack.

            Obama would not be coming to Congress to seek permission to expand our country’s efforts in fighting ISIS if he thought he could do that without garnering enormous criticism from the Republicans in Congress for overstepping his authority.

            SO AS USUAL, YOU JUST KEEP ON LYING!!!!!!!!

            AND REMEMBER – GOD IS KEEPING TRACK!!!!!

            Reply
          19. mike June 21, 2015

            You really do live in a hole.

            The 2002 AMUF states specifically use of military force against Iraq Resolution 2002(2002 AUMF; P.L. 107-243).

            AMUF IS ALIVE AND WELL. In fact, Obama can use both as stated by Congressional research service feb. 2015

            What you are referring to is 2001 AMUF. Wrong again douche bag.

            Obama Administration officials and the President’s September 2014 notifications to Congress for airstrikes and other actions in Iraq and Syria, however, stated that two enacted authorizations for use of military force (AUMFs), the
            Authorization for Use of Military Force (2001 AUMF; P.L. 107-40), and the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (2002 AUMF; P.L. 107-243), provide authorization for certain U.S. military strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, as well as the Khorasan Group of Al Qaeda in Syria.

            Even Pelosi admits 2002 AMUF is alive and well. Pelosi then went on to say, “I don’t see any reason — in fact I actively support — repealing the 2002 authorization.
            Go back in your hole where it is very dark and void of light and enlightenment, like your brain. Obama attempt at a new AMUF is all about “covering his A$$”.

            I don’t presume what God is thinking like you but it he is I would be watching your own a$$. You are far from truthful or trustwothy.

            Reply
          20. Independent1 June 21, 2015

            And the lies continue…you just can’t post the truth can you!!!

            You don’t comprehend very well do you??? Ignorant is as ignorant gets and you are totally ignorant!!!!!!

            From wikipedia:

            The Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), Pub. L. 107-40, codified at 115 Stat. 224 and passed as S.J.Res. 23 by the United States Congress on September 14, 2001, authorizes the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the attacks on September 11, 2001. The authorization granted the President the authority to use all “necessary and appropriate force” against those whom he determined “planned, authorized, committed or aided” the September 11th attacks, or who harbored said persons or groups. The AUMF was signed by President George W. Bush on September 18, 2001.

            Reply
          21. mike June 21, 2015

            You really are a pathetic person who ignores the facts and lies to try and win a point.

            For the record. There is not nor has there ever been a 2002 AMUF the use of military force Iraq resolution, is that correct?? A resolution that Pelosi acknowledged, Right? A resolution that Obama used to justify air power in Iraq, Right? An AMUF that is still enforce, Right? 2002 AMUF covers much more than trials for 911 participants as you claim.

            More importantly is the fact that both 2001 AMUF and 2002 AMUF(use of military force against Iraq) are alive and well, and being used by Obama to wage air operations against ISIS. So your asinine comment that the right is holding up his AMUF is nothing more than a moot point. The two AMUFs signed by Bush have never been repealed and are being used by Obama, even when he doesn’t like them.

            So back to original statement, “You’re intentionally also forgetting lowlife, that Obama asked for Congress to grant him authorization to widen the war on ISIS months ago, and conveniently, the GOP has been sitting on that request for months!!!” What the Obama AMUF actually does is limits not widens the war. AGAIN, HE DOESN’T NEED ANOTHER AMUF, HE HAS TWO ACTIVE AMUF’S NOW AND IS USING THEM.

            Reply
          22. Independent1 June 21, 2015

            Like I said, you don’t comprehend very well and it looks like for a while the White House didn’t comprehend for a while . The AMUFs signed by Bush would not apply to actions being taken today against ISIS. For at least 2 reasons: 1) The AMUF was requested by George Bush and 2) was specifically written to allow ONLY GEORGE BUSH to wage WAR AGAINST IRAQ!!

            I think people in the White House woke up to that fact and realized that Obama need Congress to grant him the authority to proceed against ISIS beyond the level that just being President allowed him.

            As you could see from the 2001 AMUF, it was specific to those who were involved with the 9/11 attack. The 2002 AMUF was very specific with respect to granting GEORGE BUSH authority to wage war AND ONLY AGAINST IRAQ – not for IRAQ’S PROTECTION!!!!!!

            See this and start learning how to read and comprehend!!!!!

            The resolution authorized President Bush to use the Armed Forces of the United States “as he determines to be necessary and appropriate” in order to “defend thenational security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions regarding Iraq.”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq_Resolution

            ————————–

            “Authorized George Bush ….AS HE DETERMINES…. to defend the national security of the U.S. AGAINST THE CONTINUING THREAT POSED BY IRAQ….”

            Where do you see anything in there that says, President Obama is authorized to take what actions HE WANTS against an ENEMY LOOKING TO DESTROY IRAQ?????

            WHERE DO YOU SEE THAT??????

            YOU REALLY ARE CLUELESS ENOUGH TO BELIEVE CONGRESS WOULD SIGN AND OPEN ENDED AUTHORIZATION FOR ANY PRESIDENT TO WAGE WAR????

            GET REAL!!

            And even some Democrats were already questioning by what authority Obama was continuing to even do air strikes against ISIS!!!

            Reply
          23. mike June 22, 2015

            More stupidity spewing from your so called brain.

            If 2002 AMUF was only for Bush 43, then why is Obama using it?? Why did Obama and democrats when they controlled congress repeal both 2001 and 2002 AMUF? So Obama is waging a air war illegally by your claims.

            Senate Arm Service committee, 8/14, “Acting to protect American interests, if an action would serve our national security, that’s going to be what’s important rather than the fine points of legality here.”

            2002 AMUF said President of the United States, not Bush. The vague wording technically allows Obama to interpret it as an authorization to use force against any threat emanating from Iraq, including ISIS. “The Authorization for the Use of Military Force Against Iraq of 2002.” Under this AUMF, Congress granted the President of the United States the power to use the U.S. Armed Forces for the purpose of defending “the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq.” “Continuing threat posed” includes ISIS.

            Obama, a constitutional scholar, and his lawyers say he has the authority.
            PS: writing and passing open ended and vague bills is the hallmark of Congress.
            Bottom line, Obama is waging a limited war in Iraq, authorized by Congress. Has added 3500 troops on the ground. He left Iraq because, he claims an “immunity”issue, but yet troops are back and nary a word about Immunity.
            This is his war and he is only concerned about covering his a$$.

            Reply
          24. Independent1 June 22, 2015

            More of your meaningless babble. The Amufs were clearly set up by Congress for GWB only and OBAMA IS NOT USING THEM!!! He’s using only the general authorities that BEING PRESIDENT GIVE HIM!!! Which is why he put in a request for Congress to give him an authorization to widen what he was doing against ISIS!!! If he didn’t finally realize the amufs written for Bush didn’t give him any rights to attack ISIS – WHY DID HE PUT IN THAT REQUEST???? BELIEVE IT OR NOT, OBAMA IS NOT STUPID AND WOULD NOT HAVE ASKED FOR INCREASED AUTHORITY IF HE DIDN’T REALIZE HE NEEDED IT!!!!!!!!!

            Reply
          25. mike June 22, 2015

            Only in your limited mind is it Babble. Your Constitutional scholar/professor, your know Obama, and his legal staff have said otherwise. the text would restrict the U.S. military from engaging in “enduring offensive ground combat operations,”

            Widen the war? No, new AMUF was to limit the military,THE AMUF WOULD RESTRICT THE U.S. MILITARY FROM ENGAGING IN “ENDURING OFFENSIVE GROUND COMBAT OPERATIONS.” That is far from widening the war as you claim. No, this about CYA!!! The reason he wants Congress involved is because when the sh$t hits the fan, he wanted to blame others and deflect that he is the cause. Obama has been relying on old AUMF’s from 2001 and 2002(to authorize the campaigns against al-Qaida and in Iraq, respectively) to conduct military operations against the Islamic State group for the last nine months. Obama has said he does not need Congress’ approval to continue, but wants it. The authority he asked for against the Islamic State group would repeal the 2002 AUMF, but leaves the 2001 authority standing. The president said in his message to Congress that he wanted to work with them to “refine, and ultimately, repeal” the 2001 AUMF.

            Even Pelosi wants to limit Obama’s AMUF even more. But the republicans are at fault. Just more of your irrational thinking.
            I never called him stupid but he is a politician and will lie and has been caught in numerous lies, at the drop of a hat to get what wants.
            He dithered and ISIS is now all his.

            Reply
          26. dpaano August 26, 2015

            Independent1: Give up…it’s useless to argue with Mike because he knows nothing and continues to spew his stupidity over and over again. Trying to explain anything to him is like blowing in the wind…..it’s useless and gets you absolutely no where! He’s not going to believe anything factual that you can throw at him…..he has his own set of facts! Unfortunately, they are wrong!

            Reply
          27. Justin Napolitano June 21, 2015

            Mike, the big coward. Go hide under your bed, chicken sh**.
            I want others to fight but am afraid, signed Mike the coward.

            Reply
          28. mike June 22, 2015

            Another mental midget comment from you!!
            Thanks for the chuckle.

            Reply
          29. dpaano August 26, 2015

            Mike is a typical GOP shill…..he doesn’t care, as they don’t either, what the American people want! We’ve had enough war….we’ve lost too many of our young men and women! Why should we continue to fight for countries that are useless and won’t fight for themselves! As our president has said…..they need to step up to the plate and learn to defend their own country….they shouldn’t continue to expect us to do their work for them!!! It wouldn’t be a problem helping them, but they don’t want our help and aren’t willing to defend themselves!!! There’s got to be a point in time when we decide to step back and let them deal with their problems.

            Reply
          30. JPHALL June 20, 2015

            MIKE! YOU ARE BACK! I MISSED YOUR JOKES ON IMPORTANT ISSUES. WE ALL GET THAT YOU ARE A PAID TROLL, BUT WE ENJOY WATCHING YOU SWEAT TO TRY TO RESPOND TO FACTS.

            Reply
          31. mike June 20, 2015

            Only joke I see is you trying to be funny, but alas, failing again.
            Ignorance is bliss when it comes to you and your posts.
            Sweat!!!! I don’t think so.Far from it.
            Nice try but no cigar again, my friend.

            Reply
          32. booker25 June 21, 2015

            Under GWB who invaded Iraq we now have ISIS, give credit to the right President, Bush.

            Reply
          33. mike June 21, 2015

            Mistakes were made by Bush but it doesn’t take away from Obama’s dithering and the expansion of ISIS. Obama bragged about pulling out troops as he promised in 2012 but now says it was “not my decision”. He can’t have it both ways.

            When Obama announced the withdrawal, he portrayed it as the culmination of his own strategy.

            Why has Obama put troops back in Iraq? Is there now an ‘Immunity” agreement? If not, was the lack of immunity just an excuse to get out??

            Reply
          34. Justin Napolitano June 21, 2015

            Dither your a^s. How about you go to Iraq and fight? There is nothing stopping you but your lack of backbone. You all want war when it is someone else’s a^s on the line but when it come to action all you have is a big mouth and tiny balls. Frankly I think you are a coward hiding behind your computer screen.

            Reply
          35. mike June 22, 2015

            Thinking and acting stupidly, aren’t you???

            Reply
          36. Justin Napolitano June 22, 2015

            Coward.

            Reply
          37. mike June 22, 2015

            You are acting stupidly again I see.
            Thanks for the chuckle.

            Reply
          38. dpaano August 26, 2015

            Do you not know about the agreement BUSH signed stating that our troops would be pulled out in 2014…..and the fact that our president DID want to keep some boots on the ground; however, Maliki and his gangster friends said they would not allow it. Why do you seem to always forget this and try to blame this on our current president…..do your research for the crying out loud!!! Your comments are getting mundane and ridiculous!

            Reply
          39. Justin Napolitano June 21, 2015

            You really think Obama can solve the Iraq problem if the Iraqis refuse to fight? We can get rid of ISIS but then what? Do we stay in Iraq forever? Do we make them our 51st state?
            All of you folks that blame Obama never say what you would do and none of you volunteer to go to Iraq and fight either, do you?
            All talk and no balls.

            Reply
      3. plc97477 June 20, 2015

        Maybe they have finally tired of being the butt of the joke.

        Reply
        1. JPHALL June 20, 2015

          No, they are just waiting for their masters to give them their talking points. Subject: Re: Comment on Sneaky Leakers: Why House Republicans Won’ t Release Blumenthal Transcript

          Reply
  2. Daniel Jones June 20, 2015

    I think it’s time that Blumenthal leaks his own transcripts in their entirety.

    That should shut these idiots up.

    Reply
    1. Dominick Vila June 20, 2015

      That may turn out to be the only way to find out what happened. The real reason Blumenthal’s transcript, and anything else that may exonerate the administration and, especially, Hillary Clinton, is because the GOP depends on pseudo “scandals” such as Benghazi to have a chance to win in 2016.
      Hopefully Democrats are taking notes, and respond in kind when we regain control of the Senate. With the exception of secret material, there is no reason not to release the transcript of Blumenthal’s inquisitorial interrogation.

      Reply
  3. John S. June 20, 2015

    For testimony given in camera before a politically motivated committee, perhaps a political version of the Fifth Amendment is needed.

    Republicans have learned a few things since the public sessions of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s Army-McCarthy hearings of 1954. They have learned how to propagandize (selective leaking of “classified” information) these secret committee hearings.

    Reply
  4. Lynda Groom June 20, 2015

    It seems obvious that the reason the GOP House does not want to release the tapes is that the information does not support their agenda. Of course I could be wrong, but the recent history of their actions does not give me pause.

    Reply
  5. Sterling Harris June 20, 2015

    Whenever I hear this Obstructionist Howl from the Reich-Wing I am immediately
    reminded of an infamous Goering quote.

    “The
    people don’t want war, but they can always be brought to the bidding of the
    leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked,
    and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and for exposing the country
    to danger. It works the same in every country.”

    I
    have 3 very valid questions for the Reich-Wing:

    1)
    Where was this “outrage” for the dozen or more attacks during the ChainE-Dubya
    reign of torturer?

    2)
    What is the difference between Reich-Wing outright lies and the semantics
    applied to talking points?

    3)
    Who stands to gain from yet another “investigation” into an issue that is dead
    and whipped into mythology?

    Albert
    Einstien defined “Insanity” as doing the same thing over and over again and
    expecting different results.

    Fifty+
    votes to repeal the ACA.

    Benghazi,
    Benghazi, Benghazi kind of says it all now doesn’t

    Reply
    1. Whatmeworry June 20, 2015

      And Barak reminds me of the Mexican criminals in the Humphrey Bogart Movie “Badges? We don’t need no stinking badges” as he writes new laws

      Reply
      1. Whatmeworry June 21, 2015

        And Barak reminds me of the Mexican immigrants in the Humphrey Bogart
        Movie “Badges? We need no spanking badges” as he enforces laws

        Reply
        1. dpaano August 26, 2015

          First of all, this wasn’t a Humphrey Bogart movie; second of all this wasn’t said by Mexican immigrants…it was quoted by a group of lawmen (a posse). Boy, are you ever misinformed….but that was already a given!

          Reply
          1. ebonystone August 26, 2015

            First,it was a Humphrey Bogart movie: “Treasure of the Sierra Madre.”
            Second, it was spoken by the leader of a gang of outlaws, not lawmen.

            Reply
          2. dpaano August 27, 2015

            It was also in Mel Brooks’ “Blazing Saddles” and, if I remember correctly, it was a sheriff’s posse. Sorry, I forgot that it was also in the Humphrey Bogart movie….brain fart!!! I think that movie came out the year I was born, so I missed it….will have to go and see if I can find it and watch it. Sorry for the misunderstanding…you are absolutely correct on that point.

            Reply
          3. ebonystone August 27, 2015

            And thank you for the “Blazing Saddles” reference. I’ve only seen parts of that movie, and didn’t realize it used the “steenking badge” line in homage to “Sierra Madre.” So I guess we’re both right.
            But do see “Treasure of the Sierra Madre”; it’s a Bogie classic, alongside “Maltese Falcon” and “Casablanca”. Your local library probably has it on DVD.

            Reply
      2. Sterling Harris June 21, 2015

        AND YOU REMAIN POOR AND STUPID

        Reply
      3. Whatmeworry August 27, 2015

        Linda Ketter has a mustache and harry armpits

        Reply
  6. Sterling Harris June 20, 2015

    GOP MADNESS II
    Who
    couldn’t be elated that Republicans have opted to re-open Benghazi — a
    hundredth time — just as they have the non-IRS scandal, the non-birthed
    scandal, etc., ad nauseam.

    This
    is actually terrific for Democrats who may predict well in advance that all the
    questions raised to date about Benghazi, without exception, have been answered a
    dozen or more times already, nm that thick

    Republicans
    aren’t able to compute the findings, or if so, that in the re-opening they are
    admitting to America and the world that they have nothing else they can do.

    One
    thing they might do is to consider the Medicaid thing. It’s going to push
    Benghazi, IRS and all the rest of their contrived scandals offstage because
    Americas are dying at the hands of Republican governors, among other murderers,
    who are punishing every-day, hard-working, honest, loving, wholesome Americans
    into financial ruin, poor health and even death by refusing them Medicaid
    benefits at a price they could be paying instead of a price they cannot.

    This
    is murder, plain and simple, at least that’s my opinion. There is blood on the
    hands of Republicans, and not just the governors who are denying hurting, sick
    and ailing Americans health care at an affordable cost. Republicans who could
    do something about the deaths projected are not doing anything — not that we
    should be surprised.

    In
    nearly 6 years that they’ve had to do something about the country, about
    immigration reform, about balancing the budget for all Americans instead of just
    the wealthy, about education, about the crumbling infrastructure, about
    __________ (fill in the blank), they have done nothing.

    Why
    should we be surprised that sick, ailing, dying Americans aren’t a concern,
    either

    Reply
    1. dpaano August 26, 2015

      The sad part is that it is our taxpayer money paying for these stupid committees!!! And, we have nothing to say about it and can’t do a thing to stop them! It just goes on and on and on!

      Reply
  7. Whatmeworry June 20, 2015

    Joe your blaming trey Goudi

    Reply
    1. Independent1 June 21, 2015

      You know. You’re getting to be rather tiresome with your comments based on your obvous mental incompetence.

      Reply
    2. Whatmeworry June 21, 2015

      Joe your blaming Dan Ketter because the emails haven’t been released??
      Hmmmm Hilary has gone on the record that no such correspondence exists.
      All Gowdy is doing is setting up the Queen Linda for a purgery
      conviction

      Reply
    3. Daniel Max Ketter June 21, 2015

      Why Ms Clinton will have my vote. God bless our labor unions for their service to our country.

      Reply
    4. Insinnergy June 21, 2015

      Quiet moron. Adults are talking.

      Reply
      1. Whatmeworry June 22, 2015

        Don’t like your perjury queen being outed??

        Reply
        1. Whatmeworry June 22, 2015

          Don’t like I’m a perjury queen being outed??

          Reply
        2. Daniel Max Ketter June 22, 2015

          My boy Lewis ain’t no perjury queen, but he is a gay drag queen. I should have realized it when he was wearing my wifes clothes to church. Live and let live is what I say.

          Reply
      2. Whatmeworry June 22, 2015

        Dont call me a moron

        Reply
    5. The_Magic_M June 25, 2015

      Learn to spell “perjury”, dude. But nice Freudian slip. You really want to “purge” Hillary, don’t you?

      Reply
  8. booker25 June 21, 2015

    This entire committee is a freaking joke and so is the clown running it. There is nothing to see, nothing to find. But lets keep it going in the hope that they can dirty up Hillary.

    Reply
  9. Justin Napolitano June 21, 2015

    The Democrats need to demand an investigation of the committee investigating Benghazi. DEMAND and investigation Democrats, now!

    Reply
  10. Insinnergy June 21, 2015

    Don’t expect decency and integrity from people who, it appears, never knew the meaning of the words.

    Like a good little lap dog, Gowdy is doing precisely what he has been ‘paid’ (in favors and promises, no doubt) to do. Use his position and power to generate the maximum amount of baseless smears against an opposing party presidential candidate.

    The fact that he is openly demeaning the honor of his office and position, wasting taxpayer money, and bringing the Congress into further disrepute doesn’t appear to bother him in the slightest.

    If this man ever had a moral compass, I can’t see any evidence of it.

    Reply

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