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Rep. Carson says Benghazi committee is political

Posted at 6:37 PM, Oct 04, 2015

INDIANAPOLIS -- A top Indiana Democrat says the House committee investigating the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi is politically motivated to damage Hillary Clinton’s chances in the presidential election.

The House Select Committee has been investigating the events of September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, an attack that left four people dead, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

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Appearing Sunday on Indianapolis This Week on RTV6, Rep. Andre Carson said the committee has met longer than nearly every other select committee, including the one that investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Watch the full interview in the video player above

“That tells me, very definitively, that this committee was created, and is still in operation, as a political tool to influence the presidential election,” Carson, a Democrat, told RTV6’s Jason Fechner.

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Carson has publicly announced his endorsement for Clinton in 2016.

Some Democrats in Washington this week have called for the committee to be disbanded, after comments made on Fox News by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

"Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?" McCarthy said during an interview Tuesday.  "But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she's untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened had we not fought."

McCarthy later backtracked those comments, saying the committee’s only purpose was to find the facts of what happened that night, and that the work is not political

Rep. Susan Brooks, a Republican from Indiana who serves on the Benghazi panel, says their work has always been “fact-based” into what happened.

“This is not an investigation of Hillary Clinton,” Brooks said in a statement to RTV6. “In fact, the Select Committee has interviewed 50 witnesses to date, most have never been interviewed before and only four have been with people who are directly connected to Hillary Clinton.”

“As a former federal prosecutor, I remain focused on the facts and committed to conducting a thorough investigation, which includes the role and knowledge of these events of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton,” Brooks said.

ABC News reports the Benghazi committee has been meeting for 72 weeks, longer than the committee that investigated Watergate.

Clinton, who was serving as Secretary of State at the time of the attack, is scheduled to testify publicly before the committee October 22.

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