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State Department grants senators 2-day access to Benghazi documents… while they're out of town

By Doug Powers  •  November 8, 2012 10:10 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

This is transparency on a “two-day limited engagement” basis, and if you can’t make it, you can’t make it:

Under pressure from senators, the State Department is allowing some lawmakers to look at cables and other documents related to the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, but only today and tomorrow, when most senators are not in Washington.

Congress is gearing up for a full week of Benghazi-related hearings next week, including a Nov. 13 hearing behind closed doors of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, led by Chairman John Kerry (D-MA). Kerry has written two letters to the State Department requesting congressional access to information and documents related to the circumstances leading up to and during the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens. Several sensitive documents have already been leaked to congressional offices and the media, so the State Department has decided to let some senators view Benghazi documents but not take them home.

As for John Kerry, he’s in line to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, so what are the odds of Lurch actually causing any Benghazi-related headaches for the Obama administration? I’ll put $20 on “no chance in hell.” By the time this ends Kerry will probably have tried to smooth things over so much he’ll be mistaken for a 6’4″ finishing sander.

Here’s the witness list for the Senate hearing next Thursday:

The witnesses will be Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA Director David Petraeus, FBI Deputy Director Sean Joyce,Under Secretary of State for Management Pat Kennedy,and National Counterterrorism Center Director Matthew Olsen.

The House Intelligence Committee will hold a closed hearing on Benghazi next week — also on Thursday, and with a similar witness list. And the House Foreign Affairs Committee has an open hearing scheduled for Thursday as well. The latter committee invited Hillary Clinton to testify.

(h/t Weasel Zippers)

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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