Jordan selected for Benghazi panel

By Jessica Wehrman The Columbus Dispatch

May 9, 2014

WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan was named today as one of seven Republicans serving on a panel that will investigate the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans.

The Urbana Republican, whose district includes Allen and Auglaize counties, is not new to the Benghazi scandal: He serves on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which has investigated the controversial matter since shortly after the Sept. 11, 2012, attack that took the life of Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three others.

He’ll join Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., and Reps. Susan Brooks, R-Ind., Mike Pompeo, R-Kansas, Martha Roby, R-Ala., Peter Roskam, R-Ill., and Lynn Westmoreland, R-Ga., on the special committee.

During a panel discussion sponsored by the Heritage Foundation on Thursday, Jordan said the select committee must answer three questions: What happened before the attacks; what happened during the attacks; and what happened after the attacks?

Before the attacks, he said, more than 200 requests for additional security had been denied.

“Why was that decision made?” he asked.

During the attacks, there was little effort to fight back.

“Why weren’t we running to the sound of the guns?” he asked.

And afterward, he said, “who started the narrative” that it wasn’t, in fact, an attack.

“There’s unanswered questions,” he said. “The committees that have been looking at this have worked hard on it, but sometimes it’s just more effective and efficient to have one central place where you’re going to gather that information, answer those three questions and ultimately get at the truth.”

No Democrats had been named to the panel yet. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was weighing whether to name any Democrats to the panel at all, or to boycott it completely. She and other Democrats have argued that the committee is nothing more than a chance to fire political potshots at the Obama administration.