Representative Trey Gowdy Was Invited To Pen This Op-Ed Piece for USA Today
Benghazi matters because four of our fellow citizens were murdered under terrifying circumstances. Benghazi matters because a diplomatic facility emblematic and representative of our country was attacked and burned on the anniversary of 9/11. Benghazi matters because Americans deserve to know the truth from those entrusted to lead and govern.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, is right to convene a select committee devoted to uncovering all relevant facts connected to Benghazi, just as the House committees of jurisdiction were right to investigate Benghazi before this. Despite the passage of 20 months, there remain unresolved questions.
Why was security for our facility in Libya inadequate, and why were repeated calls for additional security unheeded and, indeed, explicitly rejected? Was our military response during the pendency of the siege sufficient? And in the days and weeks after the attack, was the Obama administration transparent and forthright with our fellow Americans in describing the impetus behind the attack?
Moreover, no one has been arrested, prosecuted, or punished for the murders of our fellow Americans. These outstanding questions, and others, are legitimate, and seeking the answer to these questions should be an apolitical process.
Facts are neither Republican nor Democrat. While our fellow citizens are free to draw varying conclusions and inferences from the facts, surely there can be consensus that every relevant fact must be uncovered.
There are still witnesses whose testimony has not been heard. Just last week, we learned the administration has withheld relevant documents from Congress, despite a subpoena request. Some produced documents are so heavily redacted as to be meaningless. The select committee should strive to uncover every relevant witness, document or other piece of evidence so our fellow citizens can know the facts and the full truth.
"May justice be done, though the heavens fall." That adage governed my time as a prosecutor in state and federal court, and it would serve us well as we uncover the truth about Benghazi.
Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., has been chosen as chairman of the proposed House select committee to investigate Benghazi.