Rep. Gowdy: 'I Have Evidence' of Benghazi Cover-Up

Friday, 02 May 2014 09:04 PM

By Todd Beamon

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Rep. Trey Gowdy said Friday that he has evidence of a "systematic, intentional" effort by the Obama administration to withhold documents from Congress about the 2012 Benghazi attacks that killed four Americans.

"I have evidence that, not only are they hiding it, there's an intent to hide it," the South Carolina Republican told "On the Record With Greta Van Susteren" on Fox News. "I can't disclose that evidence yet, but I have evidence that there was a systematic, intentional decision to withhold certain documents from Congress — and we're just sick of it."

Urgent: Do You Think There is a Cover-up on Benghazi? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

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House Speaker John Boehner is considering Gowdy to head a select committee to investigate the Libyan attacks on Sept. 11, 2012, that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, including two former Navy SEALs.

The speaker said Friday that the House would vote on a resolution to establish the panel next week.

Gowdy, 49, a former prosecutor who is in his second House term, made the accusations in response to a question on Secretary of State John Kerry being subpoenaed — also on Friday — by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

The panel, chaired by California GOP Rep. Darrell Issa, wants Kerry to explain why the panel did not receive a 2012 email showing Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes counseling former U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice to link the Benghazi attacks to an anti-Muslim video.

The email, released Tuesday by Judicial Watch, was not among the documents the oversight panel received in response to its subpoena last year. The committee received the document this week.

Judicial Watch sued the State Department for documents relating to Benghazi last year.

Shortly after Kerry took over the top State Department job last year, he pledged to cooperate with congressional investigations of the attacks, which also killed information management officer Sean Smith, and former SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods.

"He said a year ago, with respect to Benghazi, 'If you have any trouble getting information, let me know,'" Gowdy told Van Susteren about Kerry. "Well, Mr. Secretary, we're going to let you know that we're not getting the information. We're going to get him to come and explain why we're getting documents 20 months late."

Gowdy cited the Rhodes email as the "straw that broke the camel's back" in leading Boehner to move for the select committee.

"Not only are we trying to get answers with respect to Benghazi, we're also now investigating what appears to be a White House cover-up in one of the worst explanations for why they didn't turn the documents over. I think the speaker just finally lost his patience. I'm glad he did what he did."

The congressman said that a select committee would "cross jurisdictional boundaries." Besides the oversight panel, the Benghazi attacks are being investigated by four other House committees: armed services, intelligence, foreign affairs, and judiciary.

"We were so pigeonholed, so fragmented," said Gowdy, who sits on the judiciary and oversight panels. "You just need one committee that can send subpoenas.

"Our chairmen have done the best job they can do, but you have a tendency to stick within your own bailiwick — and we need somebody to cross all lines," he added. "We need to have those lines disappear, quite frankly."

While Boehner will make the final decision on who will serve on the select panel, Gowdy said he would "volunteer to be a summer intern" to serve in order to keep his promise to the families of the victims "that I would get them the truth.

"The speaker will decide whether he thinks an old, washed-up prosecutor from South Carolina is good or not, but I'm going to help the committee — regardless of whatever position, if any, I have."

Urgent: Do You Think There is a Cover-up on Benghazi? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

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