Call 202-225-3121 and ask for the Speaker's office and then the Majority Leader's office. Tweet him @SpeakerBoehner and @EricCantor as well. On my show alone we have heard calls for a Select Committee from Senators Ayotte and McCain and from Congressmen DeSantis, Gowdy and Jordan, all three of whom did extraordinarily fine work Wednesday, as did Chairman Issa and Congressman Chaffetz and many others. It is clear the Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee is far ahead of the other four committees "investigating" this scandal, but all must be brought under one roof with one staff and one set of questions and evidence.
Energy and urgency has been lacking, or at least the public has not perceived it. If the GOP House doesn't act after hearing what it heard yesterday, it will be very much Secretary of State Clinton walking away from the crisis in Benghazi after her 2:00 AM call with Greg Hicks that night. Either a matter deserves urgent attention and action, or it doesn't. Hillary decided it didn't. What will John Boehner decide?
Think about this: At 2:00 AM Hillary Clinton spoke with the man in charge in Libya who informed her the consulate had been attacked, the Ambassador was missing, and that his people had to evacuate. An hour later news of the ambassador's death reached that man, Greg Hicks, and he informed the State Department.
My friend, former Colorado State Senator John Andrews suggested a thought experiment at dinner tonight: How would every other Secretary of State of recent memory have reacted to such a phone call? Wouldn't all of them --all of them except Hillary-- pick up the phone to the Secretary of Defense and demand every available measure be taken to assist his or her people under attack and in a dangerous country? Rice, Powell, Albright, Christopher, Eagleburger, Baker, Schultz, Haig, Muskie, Vance, Kissinger, Rogers or Rusk? Would any of them --any of them-- not at least called back after news of the death of the ambassador to encourage to new man in charge in the middle of a crisis? Would any of them have disappeared?
Think as well about the fact that some of the most extraordinarily moving testimony ever given in the halls of Congress --given by Mr. Hicks about the entire evening but especially about the security forces who climbed the roof of the Annex in Benghazi to recover the dead and the wounded-- and that it is not being played on most American media tonight.
Astonishing and disgusting.
There is nothing the Speaker, the Majority Leader and their colleagues in the House can do about the media or the Administration. But they can do the obvious and right thing, by establishing a Select Committee and thereby build upon the sense of urgency developed today, and they should do it now.
Last night my friend Mark Levin tore into Majority Leader Cantor for announcing yesterday that the House would vote to repeal all of Obamacare next week. Mark correctly noted that conservatives see right through such gimmicks. They also, I believe, wonder why, if the House can bother to move to do a symbolic thing so quickly and for so little effect, why not move quickly to do real things with real impacts, like the repeal of the Medical Device Tax which could actually pas the Senate?
Why not stand up the Select Committee on Benghazi and add to its charge an investigation into Boston's aftermath?
The House leadership has talked itself into a corner from which it is finding it increasingly difficult to escape. The only way out of that corner action. "Action this day!" Churchill used to scribble on his urgent memos, of which there were many. The reason for the lethargy is "deference" to House Chairmen fighting over turf --an indictment offered by John McCain on my radio show last week and widely understood to be completely accurate. What was merely embarrassing last week has become shameful this week, after what we all heard on Wednesday.
If action cannot be summoned on behalf of the Benghazi dead and wounded and the heroes who survived, who deserves it? If the most obvious and urgently necessary things cannot be done and instead there are symbolic votes on dead-end bills, will the House majority last beyond 2014, or if it somehow scrapes by on the weakness of the president, will its members choose again a leadership team that did nothing when it might have brought about justice at least for the heroes of Benghazi?
Wednesday's hearings gave the House a chance to set this session right, to draw a new starting line and to make new declarations of priority and seriousness. We will know by the end of the Sunday shows if Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Boehner have done.
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