It took Republicans four years, over $7 million, eight congressional investigations, 11 hours grilling former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and 800 pages to admit that Clinton was not at fault in Benghazi attack. But that doesn’t mean it’s over.
From the moment America received news of the attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Lybia — which killed U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three others — Republicans were certain that this would finally been the scandal they would use to bring down the Obama administration and perhaps even end Barack Obama’s president, having failed to do so by winning an election. What was a tragedy caused by a combination of bureaucratic ineptitude, bad luck, and poor judgement suddenly became the biggest conspiracy since Watergate.
We’d see and heard it all before. Since he took office, Republicans have longed for a genuine scandal to use against President Obama. They tried to turn every story from the alleged IRS targeting of tea party group to “Fast and Furious” into a nefarious conspiracy that would finally “prove” to America that they were right about Barack Obama all along. When those failed, they made up scandals to absurd to be believe beyond tea party circles. It got to the point where it was unusual to hear Republicans * not*
accusing the president of fraud and treason.
But then there was Benghazi. With four Americans dead in an attack by Islamic militant on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Republican couldn’t resist a chance to wave the bloody shirt and claim all shirt and accuse Obama and Clinton of treason and murder.
The problem is, there was never any “there” there. And now we have a report to prove it. The House Republicans’ Select Committee on Benghazi — the latest to investigate attack — chaired by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), finally issued it report on Tuesday, finding no evidence of wrongdoing by Clinton. Republicans took a few swipes at the Department of Defense and the State Department for failing to grasp the security risks in Benghazi.
Their main target, however, remains out of reach. Even Anne Stevens, the sister of Chris Stevens, has said that she doesn’t blame Hillary Clinton for the attack. Rep. Gowdy, chair of the committee even refused to say that Clinton lied about the whole thing.
Q: Could military have done anything differently to save Americans?
Gowdy: I don’t know.
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) June 28, 2016
What is happening. Gowdy has no conclusion after 2yr Benghazi probe & telling everyone to read 800-page report for their own conclusions.
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) June 28, 2016
— Nano (@bycon11) June 28, 2016
If only Republicans cared as much about 33,000 gun deaths each year as they do about four deaths at #Benghazi.
— Harold Itzkowitz (@HaroldItz) June 28, 2016
But that’s not to say we’ve heard the last of Benghazi. Nor is that to say anything is over. Republicans will go on trying to find something they can pin on Clinton and even on the President. The Benghazi committee reportedly went right back to investigation after issuing its report, which is not the final. The committee is due to vote on whether to adopt it by July 8. Meanwhile, the House Select Investigation Panel on Infant Lives is gearing to probe allegations illegal relationships between abortion providers and medical research institutions. The NRA just sunk $2 million into a pro-Trump ad attacking Clinton on Benghazi.
That won’t be the first or last time we here about it before the election. Republicans will go on trying to find something they can pin on Clinton and even on the President.
Here’s the best of the rest of the worst in wingnuttery this week:
- CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield lost it when Special Counsel to Donald Trump Michael Cohen suggested on Twitter that Hillary Clinton “murdered an ambassador,” in a reference to Ambassador Chris Stevens, who was killed in the Benghazi attack.
- Radio host Michael Savage complained that Benghazi committee chair Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) “should be impeached for wasting my time,” after the committee released a report with no new information and no indictment of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
- Trump surrogate and radio host Howie Carr impersonated a stereotypical Native American war whoop at a rally in Bangor, Maine, in a attempt to mock Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
- Good news! The white nationalists involved in the violent rally in Sacramento, California, have vowed to “defend” Trump supporters at the Republican convention. The Traditionalist Worker Party, which made the announcement, is headed by Matthew Heimbach, who was captured on video tape assaulting a a black female protester at a Trump rally.
- Rep. David Bratt (R-Va.) appeared on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ show to claim that liberals are allied with radical Islamists.
- The Texas Supreme Court sided with parents Laura and Michael McIntyre, who refuse to educate their kids because they believe the Rapture is just around the corner.
- On the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling, radio host Bryan Fischer likened the same-sex marriage ruling to 9/11 and Pearl Harbor.
- Catholic League president Bill Donohue is not happy with Pope Francis’ comment that “the church should not only apologize to the person who is gay whom it has offended, but it has to apologize to the poor, to exploited women, to children exploited for labor…” Donohue wants an apology from LGBT people for existing instead.
- Radio host Laura Ingraham called on listeners to wear adult diapers and soil themselves in public to protest transgender rights.
- Mississippians are going to have to deal with the reality of same-sex marriage after all, since U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves found on Thursday that the law permitting those with religious objections to deny wedding services to are sex couples and bathrooms to transgender people was unconstitutional.
- Colorado state legislator Gordon Klingenschmitt accused a transgender student athlete of being possessed by a “demonic spirit of cowardice” and a “demonic spirit of lying,” for competing against female athletes.
- Missississippi Republican state Rep. Jeff Guice brushed off a mother seeking help buying supplies for her diabetic daughter. Guice was one of three legislators Nicole Nichols contacted. He was the only who responded, “Have you thought about buying the supplies with money that you earn?”