5 join push to block Fed nominee if Benghazi witnesses kept quiet
WASHINGTON — Five Republican lawmakers joined efforts to block Obama's nominations for top positions until the White House stops what they consider muzzling people about the terrorist attack in Benghazi last year, when the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three Americans were killed.
The five are Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire; and Reps. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, Jason Chaffetz of Utah and Jim Jordan of Ohio. They join Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who started the effort.
Graham said he will block the nomination of Janet Yellen to head the Federal Reserve until eyewitnesses and their statements to the FBI within 48 hours of the attack are given to Congress.
“That's the only leverage we have,” Graham said. “How can Congress conclude an investigation if we don't have access to the people who were there?”
The lawmakers said the Obama administration is pressuring government employees not to testify to Congress about what they might know about the Sept. 11, 2012, assault.
The State Department said in a letter to Graham this week that releasing those witnesses and their statements could jeopardize a criminal investigation and endanger the lives and families of witnesses, some of whom work in high-threat foreign posts.
Graham said that if such a theory were allowed to stand, it would block Congress from exercising its oversight responsibility.
“For the good of the country, you can't hide behind a criminal investigation,” Graham said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 8 shot to death, including gunman, in Missouri rampage
- FCC plays net traffic cop
- Devoted California couple dies within 5 hours of each other
- Impasse over funding for Department of Homeland Security likely will go to wire
- Foreign government gifts to family charity present candidacy hurdle for Hillary Clinton
- Russian threat via cyber on the rise, says U.S. intelligence assessment
- White House won’t snub pro-Israel lobby
- French bulldog joins top 10 list in U.S.
- Bomb plot trial ends in Saudi’s conviction
- Loose llamas corralled on Arizona street
- Analysis: Obama’s Christianity view confounds GOP, faith leaders