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GOP names Benghazi panel, Dems consider boycott

Chairman Trey Gowdy will be joined by Susan Brooks of Indiana, Jim Jordan of Ohio, Mike Pompeo of Kansas, Martha Roby of Alabama, Peter Roskam of Illinois, and Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia.
By Gabrielle Levy   |   May 9, 2014 at 4:19 PM
| License Photo

WASHINGTON, May 9 (UPI) -- House Speaker John Boehner announced the six Republicans who make up the majority of the select committee on Benghazi on Friday, as Democrats consider how to respond.

The formation of the committee was officially approved on a party-line vote in the House Thursday afternoon. Joining Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., in the majority will be Susan Brooks of Indiana, Jim Jordan of Ohio, Mike Pompeo of Kansas, Martha Roby of Alabama, Peter Roskam of Illinois, and Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia.

"This investigation is about getting answers for the families of the victims and for the American people," Boehner said in a statement. "These members have each demonstrated a commitment to this goal, and I have confidence that they will lead a serious, fact-based inquiry."

According to the rules established for the Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi, Democrats will be allowed to appoint five members to the committee. So far, however, they have not determined if they will participate fully in what they consider to be an exercise in political theater.

Democrats would be outnumbered 7 to 5 on the committee -- whereas previous select committee investigations have featured even majority-minority panels -- and will be unable to call their own witnesses.

"What we've asked for is as much bipartisanship as possible," Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said at a press conference Friday. "When we sit down we'll see what that is and then we'll make a decision for how we proceed on that."

Some members, lead by Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., have suggested a symbolic boycott of the investigation by appointing a single member to the committee to keep tabs on its activities.

Pelosi and Boehner are expected to meet privately ahead of an announcement of the Democrats' participation.

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