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Posts Tagged ‘Jason Chaffetz’

Hillary’s campaign released a statement regarding FBI Director James Comey’s testimony before the House Oversight Committee today.

Hillary for America Statement on FBI Director Comey’s Testimony Before House Committee

Hillary for America National Press Secretary Brian Fallon released the following statement Thursday following FBI Director James Comey’s appearance before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee: “Despite the partisan motivations of this hearing, we are glad it took place and that Director Comey had the opportunity to expand upon his remarks from earlier this week. Director Comey’s testimony clearly knocked down a number of false Republican talking points and reconciled apparent contradictions between his previous remarks and Hillary Clinton’s public statements. The Director’s explanations shut the door on any remaining conspiracy theories once and for all. While Republicans may try to keep this issue alive, this hearing proved those efforts will only backfire.”

15 Facts From Comey

FBI Director’s Testimony Backs Up Clinton, Debunks Republican Conspiracy Theories

Today, House Republicans brought FBI Director James Comey in to testify – after the conclusion of a year-long investigation – in hopes of uncovering new details to damage Hillary Clinton. Instead, Comey’s testimony only debunked GOP talking points and further substantiated Clinton’s case.

Here are 15 key takeaways:

  1.  Emails reported as “marked classified” were improperly marked.

MATT CARTWRIGHT:  I don’t think you were given a full chance to talk about those three documents with the little ‘C’s’ on them. Were they properly documented? Were they properly marked according to the manual? COMEY: No.

  1. And those emails could be reasonably judged as not classified.

MATT CARTWRIGHT: If Secretary Clinton were an expert about what’s classified and not classified and we’re following the manual, the absence of a header would tell her immediately that those three documents were not classified. Am I correct in that?  |  COMEY: That would be a reasonable inference.

  1. There’s no evidence Clinton ever knew she had received classified information or intended to retain it on her server.

COMEY: There is in my view not evidence beyond certainly probable cause, not evidence beyond a reasonable doubt she knew she was receiving classified information or she intended to retain it on her server.

  1. Guccifer admitted his claim he had hacked Clinton’s server was a lie.

BLAKE FARENTHOLD: And [Guccifer] claimed he gained access to Sid Blumenthal’s e-mail account and traced him back to Secretary Clinton’s private server. Can you confirm that Guccifer never gained access to her server.  |  COMEY: He admitted that was a lie.

  1. And there is no evidence that Clinton’s server has ever been successfully hacked.

COMEY: We were not able to conclude [any hacking attempts] were successful.

  1. The FBI’s investigation was not influenced by outside officials.

COMEY: “They didn’t influence it in any way.”

  1. Clinton’s case is nothing like the case of General David Petraeus.

COMEY: The Petraeus case to my mind illustrates perfectly the kind of cases the Department of Justice is willing to prosecute. Even there, they prosecuted him for a misdemeanor. In that case, you had vast quantities of highly classified information, including special sensitive compartmented information, that’s the reference to code words. Vast quantity of it not only shared with someone without authority to have it but we found it in a search warrant hidden under the insulation in his attic and then he lied to us about it during the investigation. So you have obstruction of justice, you have intentional misconduct, and a vast quantity of information. He admitted he knew that was the wrong thing to do. That is a perfect illustration of the kind of cases that get prosecuted. In my mind, it illustrates importantly the distinction to this case.

  1. Clinton’s case is nothing like the case of CIA Director John Deutch.

COMEY: The Deutch case illustrates [the difference between Clinton’s case and others who were prosecuted] perfectly. I mean he took huge amount of documents. Almost all at the TSSC I level. Had them in hard copy in his house, had them on an unclassified system connected to the internet, attempted to destroy some when he got caught. Admitted I knew I wasn’t supposed to be doing this. You have clear intent, huge amounts of documents, obstruction of justice. Those are the kinds of cases that get prosecuted. That’s what I said. I meant it when I said it. In my experience which is three decades no reasonable prosecutor would bring this case. I know that frustrates people but that’s the way the law is and that’s the way the practice is at the Department of Justice.

9. Clinton’s case is nothing like the case of Navy Commander Bryan Nishimura

COMEY: Nishimura was prosecuted under the misdemeanor statute 1924 on facts that are very different. If you want me to go through them, I’ll go through them but they are very different.

  1. The FBI’s conclusion that there was no case against Clinton was unanimous.

WILL HURD: Was this unanimous opinion within the FBI on your decision?  |  COMEY: Well the whole F.B.I. wasn’t involved but the team of agents, investigators, analysts, technologists — yes.

  1. Clinton’s email setup was, as she has always said, a matter of convenience.

COMEY: Our best information is she set it up as a matter of convenience. It was an already existing system that her husband had and she decided to have a domain on that system.

  1. Clinton did not instruct lawyers who performed the sorting of her emails.

JIM JORDAN: Did Secretary Clinton know her legal team deleted those emails they kept from us?  |  COMEY: I don’t believe so. | JORDAN: Did Secretary Clinton approve those emails being deleted?  |  COMEY: I don’t think there was any specific instruction or conversation between the Secretary and her lawyers about that.  |  JORDAN: Did you ask that question?  |  COMEY: Yes.  |  JORDAN: Did Secretary Clinton know her lawyers cleaned devices in such a way as to preclude forensic discovery?  |  COMEY: I don’t think she did.  |  JORDAN: Did you ask that question?  |  COMEY: Yes.

  1. Hillary Clinton did not lie to the FBI.

COMEY: We have no basis to conclude she lied to the FBI.

  1. Clinton was not even evasive with the FBI.

COMEY: I don’t think the [FBI] agents assessed she was evasive [in their 3.5 hour interview with Hillary Clinton.]

  1. There is no truth to the idea that others are prosecuted for what Clinton did.

COMEY: There’s all kinds of folks watching this at home who are being told, ‘well, lots of other cases were prosecuted and she wasn’t.’ I want them to know, that’s not true!

The Republicans on that committee have been gunning for Hillary Clinton for years.  Time and again they have proven themselves to be the gang that couldn’t shoot straight.

Flashback: Chaffetz and Gowdy Disclosed Sensitive Information, Outed a CIA Source

Chaffetz Flagrantly Used Personal Email

  • ABC News: Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s Business Card Lists His Gmail Address: “Hillary Clinton isn’t the only official who uses a non-government email address. A business card obtained by ABC News shows that Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, lists his Gmail address on his official House card.”

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On Multiple Occasions, Chaffetz Inappropriately Disclosed Sensitive Information

  • Washington Post, 7/15/11: Homeland Security to Chaffetz: Stop the leaks of sensitive information “The Department of Homeland Security has complained to Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) about what it says was an inappropriate disclosure of sensitive security information to the press by the House transportation panel that he chairs….a clearly miffed Department of Homeland Security Deputy Counsel Joseph B. Maher told Chaffetz that “sensitive security information” provided to his subcommittee by the Transportation Security Administration was illegally disclosed to the press.”

  • Washington Post’s Dana Milbank, 10/10/12: Chaffetz Revealed CIA Information During A Televised Congressional Hearing: “When House Republicans called a hearing in the middle of their long recess, you knew it would be something big, and indeed it was: They accidentally blew the CIA’s cover. […] Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) was the first to unmask the spooks.

    “Now that Chaffetz had alerted potential bad guys that something valuable was in the photo, the chairman, Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), attempted to lock the barn door through which the horse had just bolted. ‘I would direct that that chart be taken down,’ he said, although it already had been on C-SPAN. ‘In this hearing room, we’re not going to point out details of what may still in fact be a facility of the United States government or more facilities.’ May still be a facility? The plot thickened — and Chaffetz gave more hints. ‘I believe that the markings on that map were terribly inappropriate,” he said, adding that “the activities there could cost lives.'”

Similarly, Trey Gowdy Released The Name Of A CIA Source During The Benghazi Committee

  • POLITICO, 10/19/15: Gowdy appears to accidentally release CIA source’s name: “House Benghazi Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy appears to have accidentally released the name of a CIA source in the midst of a back-and-forth with Democrats about how sensitive the information was and whether its presence in former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email account constituted a security breach.”

  • New Republic’s Brian Beutler, 10/9/15: Rep. Gowdy engaged in “flagrant misconduct” when he “fabricated a redaction in Clinton’s emails to make it look like she’d endangered a spy.”

  • Washington Post’s Dana Milbank, 10/20/15: Rep. Gowdy “made the sensational allegation” that Hillary Clinton burned a CIA Source, then completed the “comedy of errors” by publicly releasing the person’s name.

I remember that October 10, 2012 session so well. Chaffetz and the Republicans were lording it over the Dems on the committee because they had gone on a junket to Libya that they not only did not invite the Dems to, they didn’t even tell them they were going.  Showing off for having been there,  Chaffetz made a big scene when an aerial photo of “the annex” was shown.  He started saying that when he was there he was told never, never to discuss that building, and, in his flash of hubris, the world knew that “the annex” was actually a CIA operations base.  In exposing that information, Chaffetz clumsily shot himself and his party in the foot.  Their incessant cry asking why the Benghazi consulate remained open when other consulates had closed was answered with three letters.  There was also an active CIA operation in Benghazi.

Perusing the #ComeyHearing on Twitter, I saw Watergate come up in a few tweets.  To be clear, the only commonality between Watergate and this Benghazi come emails come server expedition is this: both the break-in at the DNC Watergate headquarters and the Republican Oversight Committee fishing expedition were Republican efforts to influence a presidential election.

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So Jason Chaffetz wants (and gets!) an apology from the Secret Service for disclosing details related to his rejected application to join the force,  but the newly transparent Republican Party feels no such compunction to apologize to Hillary Clinton for investing $4.5 million and more than a year trying to damage Hillary’s reputation.  That, of course, was the purpose of the committee, and when it was articulated by majority leader and Speaker-in-waiting, Kevin McCarthy, the remark was intended as an indication of success in getting stuff done by the majority party.

In the public interest, this is what your $4.5 million tax dollars have gone to finance.

The Select Committee on Benghazi has a website.  These are the members.

 

This is the stated scope and mission of the Select Committee.

About the Select Committee

On May 8, 2014, the House of Representatives adopted H. Res. 567, Providing for the Establishment of the Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi, Libya. (Roll Call Vote 209)

The Select Committee is authorized and directed to conduct a full and complete investigation and study and issue a final report of its findings to the House regarding–

  1. All policies, decisions, and activities that contributed to the attacks on United States facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012, as well as those that affected the ability of the United States to prepare for the attacks;
  2. All policies, decisions, and activities to respond to and repel the attacks on United States facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012, including efforts to rescue United States personnel;
  3. Internal and public executive branch communications about the attacks on United States facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012;
  4. Accountability for policies and decisions related to the security of facilities in Benghazi, Libya, and the response to the attacks, including individuals and entities responsible for those policies and decisions;
  5. Executive branch authorities’ efforts to identify and bring to justice the perpetrators of the attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012;
  6. Executive branch activities and efforts to comply with Congressional inquiries into the attacks on United States facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012;
  7. Recommendations for improving executive branch cooperation and compliance with congressional oversight and investigations;
  8. Information related to lessons learned from the attacks and executive branch activities and efforts to protect United States facilities and personnel abroad; and
  9. Any other relevant issues relating to the attacks, the response to the attacks, or the investigation by the House of Representatives into the attacks.

Number 9 looks like a catch-all item meant to license anything related in any kind of webby way, and, of course, “relevant” is not defined and obviously is left to the discretion of members.

Here are the hearings.

Hearings

There are no hearings currently scheduled.

Past Hearings

Tue, 01/27/2015 – 10:30am
HVC-210, The Capitol

Subject Matter: Status Review of Outstanding Requests

Witnesses

Neil Higgins

Director of Congressional Affairs

Central Intelligence Agency

Joel Rubin

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs

Wed, 12/10/2014 – 10:00am
HVC-210

Topic: Reviewing Efforts to Secure U.S. Diplomatic Facilities and Personnel

Witnesses:

Greg Starr

Assistant Secretary for Diplomatic Security

Steve Linick

The Inspector General, Department of State

Wed, 09/17/2014 – 10:00am
HVC-210, Capitol Visitor Center

Topic: Implementation of the Accountability Review Board recommendations

One report has been issued.

Reports

H.Res. 567 authorizes and directs the Select Committee to conduct a full and complete investigation and study of the events surrounding the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi and issue a final report of its findings to the House.

The non classified versions of this final report, as well as any interim reports, will be published on this page.

May 8, 2015- Interim Progress Update

Statements can be accessed here >>>>

Republicans are tripping all over their own feet trying to walk back McCarthy’s assertion.  Three hearings, none since January 27, and one interim report from May that is 15 pages long – that is what $4.5 million have bought.  Ten hearings have been canceled according to the July 15 letter from committee Democrats to the chairman.

In contrast, the current status of the Warren Commission Report is about 900 pages with 26 volumes of supporting material.  More will be released in 2017.

Has there been any Congressional endeavor as dysfunctional, wasteful, and disingenuous?  The only real inaccuracy in McCarthy’s statement is the damage to Hillary Clinton’s image.  We have known all along that the committee had a political mission and that Hillary was the target. The truth is that despite their expensive, extended efforts she is looking very good!

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McCarthy’s candidness is as refreshing as the toothpaste Republicans are trying to get back into the tube.  We just don’t want to buy any more toothpaste right now.
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Myth:  Hillary Clinton said the attack on the Benghazi installation was an outgrowth of a demonstration against an anti-Islamist video on the internet.

Not exactly.  Here are her words on September 12, 2012.

We are working to determine the precise motivations and methods of those who carried out this assault. Some have sought to justify this vicious behavior, along with the protest that took place at our Embassy in Cairo yesterday, as a response to inflammatory material posted on the internet.

There were demonstrations against such a video at many U.S. embassies world-wide and in the region,  however.

Sep 11, 2012

Cairo protesters scale U.S. Embassy wall, remove flag

Egyptian demonstrators climbed the walls of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo today and pulled down the American flag to protest a film they say is insulting to the prophet Mohammad.

This Wikipedia entry gives a pretty complete treatment.  All of these embassies were under the oversight of the State Department.  The American School in Tunisia was destroyed.  Secretary Clinton, just back from a tour that ended in Vladivostok,  did have her hands full, but she did not blame this attack on the video.

Myth: She blamed the attack on the video at the Transfer of Remains Ceremony at Andrews AFB on the 14th.  Nope again.  She referred to the demonstrations above, but she did not say they caused the attack. Speaking of Ambassador Chris Stevens she said this.

The President of the Palestinian Authority, who worked closely with Chris when he served in Jerusalem, sent me a letter remembering his energy and integrity, and deploring – and I quote – “an act of ugly terror.” Many others from across the Middle East and North Africa have offered similar sentiments.

This has been a difficult week for the State Department and for our country. We’ve seen the heavy assault on our post in Benghazi that took the lives of those brave men. We’ve seen rage and violence directed at American embassies over an awful internet video that we had nothing to do with.

Spin: “What difference does it make?”  First of all, those are not her exact words.  Second,  the exasperated remark came in the course of an exchange during Hillary Clinton’s testimony at the House Foreign Affairs Committee on January 23.  The focus of that exchange was whether Secretary Clinton had spoken to any individual on the ground in Benghazi on the night of September 11.  Thanks to Tom Kertscher at PolitiFact we have the transcript (there is more at this link.)

Clinton: Senator, you know, when you’re in these positions, the last thing you want to do is interfere with any other process going on, number one—

Johnson: I realize that’s a good excuse.

Clinton: Well, no, it’s the fact. Number two, I would recommend highly you read both what the ARB said about it and the classified ARB because, even today, there are questions being raised. Now, we have no doubt they were terrorists, they were militants, they attacked us, they killed our people. But what was going on and why they were doing what they were doing is still unknown —

Johnson: No, again, we were misled that there were supposedly protests and that something sprang out of that — an assault sprang out of that — and that was easily ascertained that that was not the fact, and the American people could have known that within days and they didn’t know that.

Clinton: With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator. Now, honestly, I will do my best to answer your questions about this, but the fact is that people were trying in real time to get to the best information. The IC has a process, I understand, going with the other committees to explain how these talking points came out. But you know, to be clear, it is, from my perspective, less important today looking backwards as to why these militants decided they did it than to find them and bring them to justice, and then maybe we’ll figure out what was going on in the meantime.

Johnson: OK. Thank you, Madame Secretary.

Read more >>>>

Spin: Nordstrom, understandably distressed,  keeps returning like the Ancient Mariner saying Hillary Clinton refused additional security requested in March 2012.   The body that properly should be called upon to address the reason for the reduction of available security resources is the House Appropriations Committee that cut the diplomatic security budget by hundreds of millions of dollars  two years in a row. (Oh!  Hi there Jason Chaffetz of the teary eyes and choked up throat!)

Spin: Gregory Hicks, demoted for speaking out. Leaving aside for the moment that you chose to speak to a Congress person without a lawyer present as that terrible witch Cheryl Mills pointed out to be State Department protocol, let’s look at what you did do.  Left in charge of Embassy Tripoli on September 11 with four special forces in place, contacted by Ambassador Stevens (who had the other six special forces assigned to Embassy Tripoli with him in Benghazi), and told the installation was under attack, you thought it would be a great idea to send the last four special forces in Tripoli 400 miles away.

This,  while embassies across the region and beyond were subject to rather aggressive demonstrations. Let’s also leave aside the logistics of getting those forces to Benghazi in time to do anything to help.  There were two things that were unknown.  First,  was the Benghazi attack a distractor and precursor to a bigger attack on Embassy Tripoli (of which you were in charge)?  Second, is there another attack coming in Benghazi?  The second happened to be the case.  But Hicks decided it made the best sense to send the last remaining forces out of Tripoli.

“I’m in charge” echoes from the grave of Alexander Haig aside, I have never seen a less responsible decision.  Hicks was second in command and in charge of Embassy Tripoli that night.  He was responsible for all embassy personnel and all classified material and electronics inside the embassy.  This was his decision – to strip away all special forces on the ground there -yes, in the fog of an attack hundreds of miles away.  We appreciate your service, but, questioning your judgment,  understand why you were assigned a “desk job.”

Is this who should be chief of any mission?  Or second in command?  If you have ever been in charge of anything,  you know the answer to this question.  If you are a mom, you know the answer.

Happy Mother’s Day to our cherished and wise Madame Secretary!  Great mom and great SOS!

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Resoundingly missing from the cover of the Interim Progress Report  on the Benghazi, Libya consulate attack published yesterday by the House Republican Conference is the name Harold Rogers (R-KY), chairman of the House Appropriations committee that twice slashed the State Department’s diplomatic security budget.   That committee was apparently excused from reporting to the conference in the zealous crusade being waged by Tea Party Republicans,  led by Darryl Issa and Jason Chaffetz, to pin blame on then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  Issa’s name is listed as a co-author of the report while Media Matters reports that Chaffetz appeared with Megyn Kelly to discuss the report released to great hullabaloo in right-wing circles.

Fox’s Kelly Interviews Rep. Chaffetz And Ignores His Hypocrisy Over Embassy Security

 ANDREW LAWRENCE

During the interview there was no mention of Rep. Chaffetz’s own vote to cut funding to embassy security or reports that have undermined right-wing attacks on Clinton.

SNIP

Kelly provided Chaffetz with numerous opportunities to bash Clinton – asking if Clinton “blatantly lied” over requests being made for more security at the embassy, allowing Chaffetz to make claims that Clinton personally denied more security for the embassy, and speculating that there are documents being hidden from lawmakers that prove Clinton had direct knowledge regarding the lack of security at the embassy.

Read more >>>>

Oh!  So he is speculating!  Never mind that she accepted full responsibility for failures, provided State Department personnel to testify and documents for examination as requested, submitted the Accountability Review Board report in a timely fashion from home while recovering from a concussion and blood clot,  and went on to testify in person before committees in both the Senate  and the House as requested before she had fully recovered from her serious (and scary) health issues – never mind all of that.  Chaffetz and his Tea Partiers think documents are being hidden.   According to an article yesterday inThe Hill,  the former secretary was not interviewed by the audit committee.

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Representatives Darrell Issa and Jason Chaffetz of the House Oversight Committee, on October 2, sent Secretary of State Hillary Clinton a letter listing attacks in Libya  over the six months prior to the deadly September 11 attack on our Benghazi consulate.   In the letter, Issa and Chaffetz make the following request:

To help the Committee in its assessment of the security situation in Benghazi belbre (sic) Ambassador Stevens’ murder please prepare a written response to the following no later than October 8, 2012, and make the appropriate officials from the Department available for a briefing for of the Committee by the same date:

l. Was State Department headquarters in Washington aware of all of the above incidents? If not, why not?

2. If so, what measures did the State Department take to match the level of security provided to the U.S. Mission in Libya to the level of threat?

3. Please detail any requests made by Embassy Tripoli to State Department headquarters for additional security. whether in general or in light of specific attacks mentioned above. How did the Department respond to each of those requests?

The Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is the principal oversight committee of the House of Representatives and may at “any time” investigate “any matter” as set forth in House Rule X. When producing documents to the Committee, please deliver production sets to the Majority Staff in Room 2157 of the Rayburn House Office Building and the Minority Staff in Room 2471 of the Rayburn House Office Building. The Committee prefers, if possible, to receive all documents in electronic format. If you have any questions about these requests, please contact Tom Alexander or Brien Beattie of the Committee staff at (202) 225-5074. Thank you for your attention to this important matter.

The following day, in a press availability with the Foreign Minister of  Kazakhstan, Secretary made the following statements.

There are continuing questions about what exactly happened in Benghazi on that night three weeks ago. And we will not rest until we answer those questions and until we track down the terrorists who killed our people. Active efforts are also underway to determine who was responsible and bring them to justice.

We have already formed an Accountability Review Board to examine this attack and to explore how we can prevent anything like this from happening in the future. The board is beginning its work this week under the leadership of Ambassador Thomas Pickering. The board’s mandate is to determine whether our security systems and procedures in Benghazi were appropriate in light of the threat environment, whether those systems and procedures were properly implemented, and any lessons that may be relevant to our work around the world.

The men and women who serve this country as diplomats deserve no less than a full and accurate accounting, wherever that leads. And I am committed to seeking that for them and for those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation.

No one wants to determine what happened that night in Benghazi more than the President and I do. No one is more committed to ensuring it doesn’t happen again. And nobody will hold this Department more accountable than we hold ourselves, because we served with and we knew the four men we lost. They are not just names or profiles to us. They are our colleagues and our friends.

In our initial reviews over the past two weeks, we have worked closely with other agencies, and we have learned a number of things. We will continue to learn more in the days to come. We are committed to a process that is as transparent as possible while balancing the needs of the investigations underway. It will take time before we have a complete understanding of what actually did happen. But still, I am asking the board to move as quickly as possible without sacrificing diligence and accuracy. In the interim, we will continue to provide as much accurate information as we can to the public and to the Congress.

As I’ve been saying for four years, our diplomats and development experts are on the front lines, just like our troops. And the entire United States Government needs to work together to protect them. We will not retreat. We will keep leading, and we will stay engaged everywhere in the world, including in those hard places where America’s interests and security are at stake. That is the best way to honor those whom we have lost.

There are a few things that are clear and a few that are not moving ahead.

1. The written documentation and appropriate officials requested in the letter are to be available tomorrow.

2. The committee has left the determination of who those officials are to be up to the judgment of the department.  Nothing in the letter specifies that the secretary herself be among them.

3. The secretary has pledged full cooperation and stated compelling reasons why.

4. Any information provided to the committee tomorrow will be incomplete and preliminary.

The air is rife with speculation and accusation  only temporarily quelled by the media shift to the presidential debate over the past few days.   This week there will be a debate between  Joe Biden and Paul Ryan that may also absorb whatever light might have shone on the hearing Issa’s committee has scheduled for Wednesday, October 10.  Whether the subject of the attack comes up in the debate is yet to be seen, and as of right now, we do not know for certain whether the Secretary of State herself will appear before the committee since her presence was not specifically requested in the letter.  Those of us who follow her work and know her level of dedication are prone to expect that she will and that she will do so eminently well-prepared.

We should bear in mind, however, that no matter what information the State Department headquarters in D.C. had,  ability to provide adequate security to embassies in high-risk locations is not completely in the hands of the department.

Benghazi attack followed deep cuts in State Department security budget

By Shaun Waterman

The Washington Times

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Investigators looking for lessons from the fatal terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi might want to start on Capitol Hill, where Congress slashed spending on diplomatic security and U.S. embassy construction over the past two years.

Since 2010, Congress cut $296 million from the State Department’s spending request for embassy security and construction, with additional cuts in other State Department security accounts, according to an analysis by a former appropriations committee staffer.

Read more >>>>

Clearly, a great deal of what the State Department could and could not do to increase security, if indeed headquarters was notified of such a need, rested not in the hands of the department itself, but rather in the hands of the same body that is now calling the secretary and her department to task,  the House of Representatives and specifically,  the Appropriations Committee.

Try as they might to somehow blame the Secretary of State for not adequately protecting her colleagues,  the Republican Tea Party House has blood on its hands and should be called to task  as well.  We should not forget their role in this going forward.

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