The Case for Congressional Investigation of Benghazi E-Mails

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By Peter Wehner,

from The Wall Street Journal,

House Speaker John Boehner announced Friday that he intends for the House to vote to create a new select committee to investigate the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. Meanwhile, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee announced that it has subpoenaed Secretary of State John Kerry to testify at a May 21 hearing.

These developments were triggered by the revelation Wednesday that White House aide Ben Rhodes, now deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, urged then-United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice to “underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.” Many in the Obama administration knew the attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi were unrelated to the Internet video before the Rhodes e-mail was sent, and the administration may have hidden records after an earlier congressional subpoena.

Partisan defenders of the president will insist this is a witch hunt. In fact, when the White House engages in what CNN’s Jake Tapper admits is “dissembling” on a matter in which four Americans were killed, a thorough investigation is warranted. Violations of the public trust on this scale are, by any reasonable standard, problematic.

Republicans should approach this with restrained rhetoric, and in a procedurally fair-minded manner. They should not go beyond where the evidence leads. But they should pursue the evidence where it leads.

This story, which Obama aides had more or less contained, just got a good deal worse.

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