When witnesses are sworn in to testify, they pledge to tell “the truth, the whole truth and NOTHING BUT the truth, so help me God” (at least that last part should be in there – it has a way of keeping people honest when they give any thought to it). Yet, for some reason, when government officials take that oath before testifying in front of Congress, they lie like rugs by telling ANYTHING but the truth (filibuster and spin). The latest example comes from Joel Rubin, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs.
In testimony before the House Select Committee on Benghazi, Rubin violated his oath because he did NOT tell the whole truth and he certainly didn’t take that line about “nothing but the truth” to heart because when asked simple, yes or no questions, he dodged.
Posted below are the most compelling and revealing exchanges from the third hearing conducted by the Select Committee. First up is the grilling of Rubin by Committee chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC). The crux of Gowdy’s questioning was that quibbling over what documents the State Department was required to hand over to the Committee was ridiculous. Citing statute, Gowdy said State was required to hand over “all” of the documents. A common refrain from Rubin when it came to questions about why the State Department had not produced documents was because it didn’t know the priorities of the Committee.
Gowdy made it obvious at several points that the priorities of the Committee should have nothing to do with what documents they receive; they just want ‘all’ of them.
It is also obvious in this exchange that Gowdy is personally feeling pressure from the American people, alternative media and elsewhere to pick up the pace of his committee’s investigation:
Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL) had an excellent line of questioning for Rubin. Early in the exchange, Roskam read from an article that Rubin wrote shortly after the Benghazi attacks in which the latter accused the investigation of being partisan and frivolous. The words penned by Rubin and read aloud by Roskam left no doubt as to Rubin’s political persuasion. After reading that excerpt, Roskam asked Rubin if the latter thought the committee before him was “partisan” and “frivolous”. Predictably, Rubin again violated the oath he took and refused to answer that question.
The best part of this exchange? Roskam drove his point home at the end by quoting from the closing scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark:
As an added bonus, here is the scene from ROLA to which Roskam was referring:
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) began by claiming that Democrats on the Committee have complained over and over about the direction of the Committee despite Gowdy allowing them to determine the subject matter of the first two hearings. Jordan then concedes that the Committee itself needs to “pick up the pace” and that it has been going too slow.
Then we get to the heart of Jordan’s questioning – the now infamous Accountability Review Board (ARB). Jordan points out that the ARB is billed by the left as comprehensive and should serve as the final word on the State Department’s role in Benghazi but then rightly asks how that can be determined if the Committee can’t have access to all of the documents the ARB had.
Jordan then calls out Rubin for falling back on the argument that the Committee has been ambiguous about how State should prioritize its document production.
In two parts, here is part 1:
Part 2 from Jordan’s questioning of Rubin may be the best exchange of the day because of its directness and simplicity. Jordan hammers on the point that the law about the ARB requires that all documents used by the ARB in its investigation are sectioned off into a separate file, which should make that particular population of documents easy for the State Department to produce. After continuing to press Rubin about whether that file even exists, Jordan never gets an answer, which should again be considered a violation of the oath Rubin took.
If the file does not exist, someone broke the law recited by Jordan.
After Jordan is done, Chairman Trey Gowdy jumps in and says that Republicans on the committee have made comments that they think he’s “too nice”. In a slight jab at those Republicans, Gowdy says he’s never been accused of that before and remarks, “I hope my three sisters are watching”.
The normally reliable Jordan again does not disappoint:
Parting thought… It’d be nice for the other Committee members to step up their games when it comes to lines of questioning. Most would rather talk than press, which is precisely what witnesses in hot seats want. The irony is that many of these Committee members are lawyers and should know this.
The Committee’s Executive Director Philip Kiko, appointed to that post by House Speaker John Boehner, has been very close to Gowdy throughout the Committee’s proceedings. Based on information available, both Boehner and Kiko could have conflicts of interest. As Shoebat.com has written previously, Kiko has a history that at a minimum, raises those concerns.
As has been reported, when it comes to who knew what and when about why the State Department and CIA were in Benghazi, there are eight members of Congress who would have been briefed – four Democrats and four Republicans. The four Republicans who likely knew what was going on were:
1.) Then Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell
2.) Then Vice Chairman of Senate Intelligence Committee Saxby Chambliss (retired)
3.) Then Chairman of House Intelligence Committee Mike Rogers (retired)
4.) House Speaker John Boehner
It may be that Boehner wants the whole truth to come out but isn’t able to tell it himself because much of it consists of classified information he cannot divulge. However, another possibility is that what went on in Benghazi was so nasty that he may not want it out because it could implicate him in wrongdoing by going along with it instead of putting a stop to it.
The latter possibility is what makes the Kiko appointment a concern. In 2001, Kiko was the chief of staff to Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and credited with being a key figure in authoring of the Patriot Act. More recently, Kiko worked as a lobbyist for Smith-Free Group, which counts the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR) among its clients.
LCCR is essentially a consortium of dozens – if not hundreds – of groups that Smith-Free is licensed to represent. One of those groups is Muslim Advocates (MA), which has connections to Muslim Brotherhood front groups through its leadership, as Shoebat.com reported.
While Kiko doesn’t appear to have represented MA, he has represented other LCCR groups, most notably the ACLU. MA’s relationship with Muslim Brotherhood-linked individuals and groups, coupled with its relationship to Smith-Free should be brought to light considering Kiko’s role with the Benghazi Select Committee.
The reason? Muslim Brotherhood-linked groups were tied to the attacks in Benghazi and the State Department has Brotherhood-linked individuals working for it.