POLITICS
05/09/2014 12:13 pm ET Updated May 09, 2014

Reince Priebus: Democrats Politicized Benghazi

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus is accusing Democrats of politicizing the 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

The Washington Examiner reports Priebus' planned remarks for the RNC's spring meeting on May 9 include a jab at Democrats for doing "desperate things" out of "fear of losing their seats." Priebus' remarks claim the White House's "favorite excuse" for recurring hearings and investigations into the Benghazi attack is that "it's the Republicans' fault."

"They want you to believe that Benghazi is not an issue. As one of their spokesmen said, dude, it was two years ago," the prepared remarks say. "But they are the ones who politicized this. From day one, the White House was more worried about their political future than bringing terrorists to justice."

Priebus insisted Democrats are "playing politics by attacking Republicans for wanting to get answers for the American people." The House of Representatives voted Thursday to launch a select committee to investigate Benghazi, which Democrats are considering boycotting.

"One more committee weighted in favor of the majority is not going to do any better. We have bottomed out on Benghazi," Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) said.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) promised the committee "is not going to be a sideshow, this is not going to be a circus." He refused, though, to tell the National Republican Congressional Committee not to fundraise off of the committee's investigation into the Benghazi attack.

Democratic National Commitee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said the Benghazi committee, being led by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), is "nothing more than a political ploy, because continuing to focus obsessively on repealing the Affordable Care Act has lost its luster even among their own party members and even among their partisans." Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel also spoke out against the investigation, encouraging Democrats not to participate in the GOP's "political strategy."

"[I]t has become a Republican political strategy meant to raise money and excite their base," Israel told Democrats Wednesday, according to the Washington Post. "The American people want us to be focused on creating middle class jobs, not jobs for lawyers investigating Democrats. Republicans have now totally crossed the line by exploiting and fundraising off of this tragedy and the loss of brave Americans. We should have nothing to do with that.”

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