Here Are the Republicans Serving on the Benghazi Select Committee

While House Democrats are still mulling over whether or not to boycott the newly formed House select committee to investigate the Benghazi attacks, Republicans have chosen their members who will serve on the panel.

Reps. Susan Brooks of Indiana; Jim Jordan of Ohio; Mike Pompeo of Kansas; Martha Roby of Alabama; Peter Roskam of Illinois and Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia will fill six of the seven slots designated for Republicans. House Speaker John Boehner had previously picked South Carolina Republican Trey Gowdy, a former federal prosecutor, to serve as chairman.

"We're going to get to the truth, plain and simple," Jordan said before the committee picks were announced. "Gowdy is uniquely equipped with his skill sets, his demeanor."

Indeed, many of the members are lawyers and serve on committees that have previously investigated the attacks, which left four Americans dead. Gowdy has already compared the upcoming panel's work to a trial, saying on MSNBC, "It would be shame on us if we intentionally dragged this out for political expediency. On the other hand, if an administration is slow-walking document production, I can't end a trial simply because the defense won't cooperate."

Gowdy, Brooks and Jordan serve on the House Oversight Committee, which has held numerous hearings on the Sept. 11, 2012 Benghazi attacks and the Obama administration's response.

Westmoreland sits on the the Intelligence Committee and serves as chairman of the oversight and investigations subcommittee. He had convened an informal group of lawmakers to examine the previous Benghazi investigations, and concluded that multiple committees were hampering efforts at fact-finding.

Pompeo also serves on the Intelligence Committee, and Roskam is the deputy whip. Roby is a former lawyer who used to be on Armed Services. Jordan is chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee.

Jordan said Thursday that there were "three questions that need to be answered" ­in the context of the select committee: why the administration ignored requests for additional security before the attack, why the response during the attack was not more immediate and forceful, and where the narrative that the attack sprung out of a video and protest originated.

"We're going to get to the truth, plain and simple," Jordan said before the committee picks were announced. "Gowdy is uniquely equipped with his skill sets, his demeanor."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Friday that Democrats are considering how to participate in the committee. The panel has spots for seven Republicans and five Democrats -- a makeup which won't change -- but Democrats want equal access when it comes to issuance of subpoenas, documents and other things.

Democrats huddled on Friday afternoon to discuss their options after Boehner sent them an email laying out the way the committee will operate. Rep. Elijah Cummings, the ranking member on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, called the letter from Boehner "a slap in the face," but said that Democrats had yet to make a final decision about whether they would participate in the committee.

"It is actually worse than the current situation that we have in Oversight and Government Reform. It's a step backwards," Cummings said, arguing that the new rules could allow the majority to call witnesses and issue subpoenas with consent from Democrats. "The conversations will continue between the speaker and the leader. But I was extremely disappointed with the response."

In a statement, Boehner said he urges "Democratic colleagues to treat this tragedy with the proper respect and appoint members so that we can finally, on a bipartisan basis, get answers, provide accountability, and help deliver justice."

The House is now in recess for the next week, though conversations could continue over the phone. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told reporters Friday morning that her caucus remained divided into four distinct groups: those who favor sending a full delegation of five Democrats to the committee regardless of the rules, those who favor sending one member to report back to the conference, those who want to pull out of the process entirely and those who are still holding out hope for discussions between Republican and Democratic leadership.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.