The main contribution that Democrats on the House Select Committee on Benghazi have made to the probe of the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks, besides protecting former secretary of state Hillary Clinton from scrutiny, has been to monitor what they claim has been the outrageous cost of the investigation.
Which makes it all the more surprising that it is Democrats — and not Republicans — who have awarded their staffers tens of thousands of dollars in bonuses.
Fox News reports that six Democratic staffers were paid $33,600 in bonuses at the end of 2014 and 2015. That’s a small percentage of the overall cost of the investigation, but it is in stark contrast to Republicans, who have not paid staffers any bonuses. A spokesman for the majority confirmed that to The Daily Caller.
Democrats have stymied the investigation ever since the Select Committee was empaneled in May 2014. Led by Maryland Rep. [crscore]Elijah Cummings[/crscore], the Democrats have accused the Republicans, led by South Carolina Rep. [crscore]Trey Gowdy[/crscore], of engaging in a partisan witch hunt aimed at taking Clinton down. They assert that the creation of the Select Committee was pointless since other congressional committees and an independent board have already determined that Clinton and the State Department acted responsibly before and after the terrorist attack, which left four Americans dead.
To further discredit the Committee’s work, the Democrats have hyped the length and cost of the investigation, publishing 40 press releases complaining about the probe’s price tag.
“It is time now for the Republicans to end this taxpayer-funded fishing expedition,” Cummings said during Clinton’s Oct. 22 testimony in front of the Committee.
And its website is equipped with a cost-tracker which estimates that as of this writing, $5,905,000 has been spent on the investigation.
“Republicans are responsible for the decision to drag out this partisan charade for almost two years and for spending nearly $6 million to date,” a Democratic committee spokesman told Fox News.
“Democrats have about half the staff as the Republicans, spend less than half the budget of the Committee, and do just as much work, if not more.”
While it is true that Democrats have fewer staff members than Republicans, there is little evidence to support the claim that they do more work — unless covering for Clinton is included as part of the work load.
As Republicans have pointed out, Democrats have not attempted to interview any witnesses from the Obama administration, nor have they requested any new documents.