Benghazi panel’s findings likely to be delayed until 2016

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The final report by the House Select Committee on Benghazi likely won’t see the light of day until 2016, well into the race for the White House.

The panel’s chairman, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), has insisted he didn’t want to drag the committee’s investigation into next year, but a spokesman indicated that might now be out of his hands.

{mosads}“Factors beyond the committee’s control, including witness availability, compliance with documents requests, the granting of security clearances and accreditations — all of which are controlled by the Executive branch — could continue to impact the timing of the inquiry’s conclusion,” panel spokesman Jamal Ware said in a statement.

The report’s potential release date was first reported by Bloomberg News.

The development could further complicate former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid.

Gowdy has asked the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee to appear before the select panel twice.

The former federal prosecutor has said he would like Clinton to appear for a closed-door briefing to examine her use of a private email server while serving as the nation’s top diplomat.

Gowdy would like Clinton to appear again in an open setting to ask her about the deadly attacks on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans, including the ambassador, dead.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), the panel’s top Democrat, condemned the delay.

“Does anybody even remember anymore that we were supposed to be investigating the attacks in Benghazi? With the Republicans’ obsessive focus on Hillary Clinton, and their now stated intention to drag out this political charade until just months before the 2016 election, the Select Committee no longer bears any resemblance to its original purpose,” he said in a statement.

“This investigation is on track to last longer than the investigations of Iran-Contra, the Kennedy assassination, Watergate, and 9/11, and it will squander more than $6 million in taxpayer funds in the process,” Cummings added.

“Instead of targeting Secretary Clinton, we should honor the promises we made to the victims’ families to not make this investigation a political football and work to ensure that this never happens again.”

— This story was updated at 12:10 p.m.

Tags Benghazi Hillary Clinton Trey Gowdy

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