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Darrell Issa Subpoenas Benghazi Documents

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By    |   Tuesday, 28 May 2013 04:24 PM

The State Department has been subpoenaed to produce all documents related to Benghazi to and from 10 current and former employees, Rep. Darrell Issa announced Tuesday.

Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said the subpoena is necessary because the State Department has refused multiple requests to provide the communications and documents on a voluntary basis.

"The State Department has not lived up to the administration’s broad and unambiguous promises of cooperation with Congress. Therefore, I am left with no alternative but to compel the State Department to produce relevant documents through a subpoena," Issa said in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry.

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"In a series of letters, my colleagues in Congress and I have requested documents and information related to the ongoing investigation. To date, the administration has largely ignored these requests, despite various pledges both you and the president have made to cooperate with Congress."

According to the letter, the committee originally asked for the documents on May 15, but the State Department responded by forwarding emails previously released by the White House.

"The documents ... did not answer outstanding questions about who at the State Department, other than spokesperson Victoria Nuland, expressed reservations about certain aspects of the talking points," the letter states.

"[That includes] language that made clear the State Department had received prior warnings of threats in the region and was aware of previous attacks on foreign interests in eastern Libya, and that extremists linked to al-Qaida may have participated in the attacks."

The letter continues that Nuland's correspondence to the interagency suggests she "did not raise these concerns in a vacuum."

"For example, after changes were made to address State Department concerns, Nuland responded that the changes did not 'resolve all my issues or those of my building leadership.'" 

The documents the subpoena covers "will help the Committee understand why, although on the day after the attacks senior State Department leadership believed that Islamic extremists were involved, there were reservations about publicly acknowledging any such involvement just three days later," the letter states.

"Publicly available information about the talking points creates the appearance that administration officials were interested in sparing the State Department from political criticism in the wake of the attack. ... This issue is at the heart of the committee’s ongoing investigation."

The subpoena sets a deadline of June 7 for Kerry to provide all documents and communications referring to Benghazi to or from:

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William Burns, deputy secretary of state; Elizabeth Dibble, principal deputy assistant secretary for near eastern affairs; Beth Jones, acting assistant secretary for near eastern affairs; Patrick F. Kennedy, under secretary for management.

Also, Cheryl Mills, counselor and chief of staff to former secretary of state Hillary Clinton; Thomas Nides, deputy secretary for management; Victoria Nuland; Philippe Reines, deputy assistant secretary; Jake Sullivan, director of policy planning; and David Adams, assistant secretary for state for legislative affairs.


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The State Department has been subpoenaed to produce all documents related to Benghazi to and from 10 current and former employees, Rep. Darrell Issa announced Thursday.
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2013-24-28
Tuesday, 28 May 2013 04:24 PM
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