After weeks of deliberating over whether to participate in a
Republican-led panel that Democrats predict will be partisan, Pelosi
announced the members who will round out the committee. House
Speaker John Boehner already has appointed the seven Republican
Referring to the special investigating committee, which will look
into the September 11, 2012, Benghazi attack that has been probed by
other House panels, Pelosi said, "It is not necessary to put the
families (of those killed) or our country through this partisan
exercise once again."
In remarks to reporters, she said Democrats will participate "to try
to bring some openness and transparency" to the panel's work.
The following Democratic representatives will be members of the
Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the senior Democrat on the House
Oversight and Government Reform Committee; Adam Smith of Washington,
the senior Democrat on House Armed Services; Adam Schiff, a member
of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Linda Sanchez of
California, an Ethics Committee member; and Tammy Duckworth, of
Illinois, who serves on the Armed Services Committee and is an Iraq
Pelosi also said that negotiations with Boehner on the operation of
the special congressional panel had not produced any agreement.
Those discussions centered on whether Democratic members of the
panel would have input on witnesses that would be subpoenaed and
whether Democrats could participate in interviewing witnesses prior
[to top of second column]
The attacks led to the deaths of four Americans, including U.S.
Ambassador Christopher Stevens. House Republicans have launched
multiple investigations into the Obama administration's handling of
embassy security in the run-up to the attack and the steps it took
in the aftermath.
Democrats have accused Republicans of creating the panel for
political purposes, including keeping the spotlight on Hillary
Clinton, who was Obama's secretary of state at the time of the
Benghazi violence. Clinton, a Democrat, is weighing a 2016 run for
Boehner has insisted that the special committee will conduct a
"serious, fact-based inquiry."
The special committee will be chaired by Republican Representative
Trey Gowdy of South Carolina.
(Editing by Susan Heavey and Nick Zieminski)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.