During an appearance on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox News yesterday evening, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (who is expected to be the next Speaker of the House) finally admitted what most of us already knew – that the entire Benghazi investigation was designed to hurt Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers.
It was obvious from the beginning that was what Republicans were going for when they kicked off what is now the longest-running special Congressional investigation in American history, I just didn’t expect for a member of the Republican leadership to admit it on TV.
Despite the fact that the Benghazi special committee has run longer than the Watergate investigation, no evidence of any wrongdoing has been found – but that was never the intent of the committee to begin with. Republicans were well aware that the media (especially conservative media) operates on a “guilty until proven innocent” mindset, and just an investigation alone would be enough to fire up their base while eroding faith in the assumed 2016 Democratic nominee.
As Steve Benen points out at MaddowBlog, the whole Benghazi investigation was nothing more than a taxpayer-funded preemptive attack on a 2016 Hillary Clinton candidacy.
Note, McCarthy sees the committee as a legitimate accomplishment of the Republican Congress, not because it’s uncovered relevant details about an act of terrorism, but because Hillary Clinton’s “numbers are dropping.” This, in his mind, is evidence of the GOP majority using its power effectively – by using a supposedly non-partisan investigatory vehicle to embarrass a Democrat with dubious allegations.
It’s almost as if the House Majority Leader assumed he was among friends, dropped his guard momentarily, and admitted out loud what Republicans are only supposed to say in private.
There was no real reason to create this committee, and the panel itself no longer serves any legitimate purpose. McCarthy’s unexpected candor was welcome – it was, to be sure, surprising to see him make such a concession on national television – but it served as a timely reminder that the Benghazi investigation that no longer focuses on Benghazi is now little more than a taxpayer-financed farce. (Source)
Republicans knew all along that Hillary Clinton would run in 2016, it wasn’t any sort of secret that she would announce. In fact, it would have been a huge shock if she had decided not to run considering the massive base of support she already had in place. The GOP attack on Hillary Clinton didn’t begin with Benghazi either. They’ve been after her since her husband was elected in 1992, presumably because they knew that one day she would also run for the White House.
That’s three decades of insinuating that she is a lesbian, that she and her husband had people murdered, and other assorted rumored scandals that never amounted to anything, other than the fact that Bill Clinton did cheat on her with other women. Through all of the attacks from the right, and false claims from the left, no evidence of anything criminal has ever been found – but that doesn’t matter in our hyper-partisan political climate where few people bother to check facts anymore.
What Republicans didn’t count on is the surprisingly popular candidacy of Bernie Sanders, or the possibility of Joe Biden entering the race as well. However, Hillary Clinton is still very much a strong contender against anyone that Republicans would likely nominate, and the GOP is continuing to turn off independent and moderate voters with their right-wing views on social issues. With their attack on Planned Parenthood, the GOP is now driving voters to Hillary Clinton instead of away from her.
Republicans are still deathly afraid of a Hillary Clinton presidency, and considering all of the years they’ve been attacking her, they very well should be.
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