Republicans want new Clinton testimony on Benghazi, may subpoena
There more calls growing for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to return to Capitol Hill, under subpoena, if necessary, to answer new questions that have surfaced about her role in the response to the Benghazi terror attack.
“I believe she was disconnected and dispassionate about what was happening,” House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa told Fox News on Monday.
Issa says forcing Clinton to testify is still on the table. Conservatives have challenged Clinton’s account of what happened and how it was presented to the public in light of recent details. Lawmakers, such as Issa and New Hampshire Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte say they want Clinton on the record about her role in watering down a CIA memo about how the attacks started — and whether she knew about the apparent lack of security at the foreign outpost.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R- S.C., suggested he was open to using subpoena power last week. “I hope she would come back without that, but yes,” he said during an interview with USA Today. “I think she needs to come back and answer questions.”
Former Vice President Dick Cheney also told Republicans during a meeting last week that they may need to subpoena Clinton to get more answers. “I think Hillary (Clinton) should be subpoenaed if necessary,” Cheney said.
The Libya controversy could undermine Clinton’s case as a future presidential candidate, which her supporters say is nothing more than a witch hunt. Republicans rejected the charge as they sought new testimony from others.
On Monday Issa sent letters to the Benghazi Accountability Review Board (ARB) co-chairmen former Ambassador Thomas Pickering and former Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen requesting that they submit to transcribed interviews in anticipation of a public hearing on the board’s investigation.
Pickering defended his decision Sunday not to question Clinton because he said it had been concluded that the negligence that led to the attacks and the misinformation that followed was not her fault. Instead, he said the missteps were made by those working beneath her.
Democrats don’t want anything to tarnish her reputation, to jeopardize her chances at a presidential run in 2016, but once she aligned herself with Obama, her fate was sealed.
But lawmakers still have questions about Clinton’s role in everything from considering security requests to emphasizing the role of an anti-Islam film in the days after the attack.
A resolution sponsored by Virginia Rep. Frank Wolf that calls on the House to form a special committee to investigate the terror attacks is gaining traction. More than 200 lawmakers have signed on to the cause.