Hillary has all her bases covered as always, good luck Gowdy trying to get to the truth.
Hillary Clinton and Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) are readying their game plans for what may prove to be the congressional showdown of the year.
Clinton, the Democratic front-runner for the White House, will testify on Thursday to Gowdy’s panel investigating the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya.
The former secretary of State enters the hearing from a position of relative strength.
A successful debate performance last week reestablished the sense that the Democratic race is hers to lose.
And after struggling to handle the controversy surrounding her use of a private email server, Clinton won a political gift after two Republican lawmakers and a GOP aide suggested the Select Committee on Benghazi, which Gowdy chairs, is politically motivated.
With a cable television audience watching on Thursday, Clinton’s goal will be to remind viewers of the damaging comments made by Republicans, including House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).
She also wants to carry the message that she’s already said everything she knows about the deadly Benghazi attack after testifying before House and Senate panels in January 2013.
“The facts haven’t changed,” said one Clinton ally. “The only thing that has changed is their admissions that this process has been politicized. And they’ve done enormous damage to themselves.
“It’s turned into kangaroo court,” the ally continued. “They’ve lost the moral argument.”
To break that narrative, Gowdy is stuck on a tightrope.
He needs to unearth some news about Clinton’s emails and put her on defense — something he appears primed to do — without seeming like too much of an attack dog.
The committee has obtained 1,500 pages of emails concerning the broader situation in Libya during Clinton’s time as secretary of State and appears ready to release information in the days — if not hours — before Clinton’s testimony.
Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), a member of the panel, said Gowdy’s committee has new information from the emails.
“None of the documents that were in her possession were available to any of those committees at the time those committees had the opportunity to ask questions,” he told reporters last week as the panel grilled Huma Abedin, the longtime senior Clinton aide, behind closed doors for eight hours.
“So yes, I think we have the opportunity to flesh out many of the details,” he added.
McCarthy’s remarks linking the committee’s work to Clinton’s falling poll numbers have increased the degree of difficulty for Gowdy and his fellow panel members.
So did similar comments by Rep. Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) and a former Republican committee staffer, who both said the committee is tied to Clinton’s political aspirations.
Gowdy told Politico that the last few weeks have been among the worst of his life.
Yet Pompeo brushed off suggestions it has made the committee’s work tougher.
“No harder, no easier,” he said. “We have a simple mission — a complex task but a simple mission.”