Since the Democrats announced their five members of the House Select committee on Benghazi, I've been researching why Rep. Alan Grayson was left off the list. He publicly said he wanted to be on it and was aided by a Credo petition to push for his inclusion if indeed the Democrats were going to participate. When we look at who makes up the Dems, we notice that there was nobody selected from House Committee on Foreign Affairs, which seemed very odd to me, as well as to others that have also mentioned this. Here are the five that were chosen.
Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD), Ranking Member, Committee on Oversight & Government Reform
Adam Smith (D-WA), Ranking Member, Armed Services Committee
Adam B. Schiff (D-CA), Committee on Appropriations (Subcommittee on State & Foreign Operations), Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
Linda T. Sánchez (D-CA), Committee on Ways and Means (Subcommittee on Oversight)
Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Armed Services Committee, Committee on Oversight & Government Reform
The House Democrats were fractured on the whole with many who thought this new committee was a charade and wanted no part of it. Rep. Adam Schiff, who is surprisingly now part of the Committee recently said it was a ‘colossal waste of time’ on Fox News.
Schiff also said that Democratic leaders should not appoint anyone to the committee. "I don't think it makes sense, really, for Democrats to participate," he said. "I think it's just a tremendous red herring and a waste of taxpayer resources."
So why was he included on the committee now? I've been checking around since the announcement was made and a source who wishes to remain anonymous said Rep. Steny Hoyer was afraid that Grayson would be too rambunctious for his taste, and so used his power to keep him off the committee -- despite the fact that Eliot Engel, the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Affairs committee, had already handpicked Rep. Grayson and gave his selection to Nancy Pelosi. Steny Hoyer went crying (to who, we don't know) and Nancy Pelosi then pulled Grayson from the panel.
This is horrible news. Speaker Boehner appointed new Tea Party favorite Trey Gowdy, who's been Rep. Issa's key lieutenant on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to head the new Benghazi commission. He already called the hearing a "trial," when speaking to MSNBC's Joe Scarborough.
There are quality Democrats on the panel, but Rep. Alan Grayson is a terrific trial lawyer who would have not stood for Gowdy's grandstanding tactics and wild-eyed, high-volume bursts of pious indignation.
And once again, the Democratic leadership in the House has failed the American people.