House Speaker John Boehner listens as GOP leaders speak to reporters following a Republican strategy meeting on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 29, 2014.
AP Photo

What conspiratorial madness looks like

Over the last 18 months, the deadly attack in Benghazi has been investigated by the independent State Department Accountability Review Board, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Senate Armed Services Committee, the House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the House Armed Services Committee, the House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
How many of them uncovered evidence of a cover-up? None.
And so far-right lawmakers said what’s really needed is a special, brand new committee. For months, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) resisted these calls, content to leave the matter in the hands of the existing committee chairs. This morning, it appears Boehner changed his mind.
Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio established a special committee to investigate the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, according to a senior leadership aide.
The news comes the same day House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa subpoenaed Secretary of State John Kerry, aiming to compel him to testify before Congress about the administration’s response to the attack.
“The new emails released this week were the straw that broke the camel’s back,” an aide in Boehner’s office told Roll Call.
In reality, the “new emails” only confirmed what was already known and offered nothing in the way of new information.
This, in a nutshell, is what conspiratorial madness looks like.
House Republicans have no health care bill. They have no immigration bill. They’ve passed no jobs bill. They won’t consider extending unemployment benefits or raising the minimum wage or fighting for pay equity or investing in infrastructure or taking climate science seriously or even tackling a compromise on debt reduction. Since Republicans took over the House, Congress’ ability to actually pass laws has slowed to levels unseen in modern times.
But good lord are they invested in discredited conspiracy theories involving Benghazi.
Remember, the materials that “were the straw that broke the camel’s back” are effectively meaningless.
Ultimately, the new e-mails do little more than buttress what has been known for a year about the immediate communication among the Obama team as it rushed to cobble together talking points from the information it had to feed to Rice, who was only asked late in the day Friday to be the White House mouthpiece.
Dave Weigel added that in order to take the “smoking gun” argument seriously, “you need to forget the previously-known” information that’s already part of the public record. Indeed, conspiracy theorists should feel discouraged, not emboldened – the “new” information Republicans are so excited about “reveals nothing new.”
But Congress has decided it wants a new committee to tackle the work that’s already been done by other committees. Your tax dollars at work.
Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), is reportedly set to head this new committee.