Clinton loyalist Sidney Blumenthal subpoenaed by House Benghazi Panel

Former Clinton White House aide Sidney Blumenthal was issued a subpoena on Tuesday compelling his appearance in front of the House Select Committee investigating the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya in 2012.  Blumenthal is expected to testify by June 3rd.

A spokesman for Representative Trey Gowdy (R-SC) stated:  “I can confirm Mr. Blumenthal has been called for a deposition by the committee.”  Representative Elijiah Cummings (D-GA), the ranking democrat on the committee, characterized the subpoena as “grandstanding.”  When contacted by Reuters for a response, Blumenthal responded by e-mail with a reference to a blog entry which appeared in National Memo, penned by Clinton patriot, Joe Conason.

The subpoena is the result of a series of e-mail exchanges between Blumenthal and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  A New York Times’ story regarding the flurry of e-mails between Clinton and Blumenthal appeared on Monday. Although Blumenthal was acting as a private citizen, the e-mails suggest he was offering counsel to Clinton on matters relating to the crisis in Libya between 2011-2012 which she forwarded to associates requesting responses to Blumenthal’s guidance.  The time frame of the e-mails is suggestive:  Blumenthal’s e-mail exchanges with Clinton are within a period when he was in the employ of the Clinton Foundation and alternatively working with investors inspecting business options in Libya.  Foreign investment requires approval of the State Department.

Blumenthal will be dragged kicking and screaming to testify; Gowdy’s panel is likely to receive programmed answers and evasive half-truths from Blumenthal.

Blumenthal, a journalist and professional truth trimmer, was hired by the Clinton White House in 1997 to advise Mr. Clinton on various policy issues; however, when the Lewinsky scandal erupted, Mr. Blumenthal assumed the role of partisan guerrilla who vigorously defended Bill Clinton with an endless string of attacks on critics and sought to undermine the Whitewater inquiry through widespread, unfounded and callous attacks on key players involved in the Lewinsky probe, particularly Kenneth Starr.

Blumenthal is a man with a rich history of provocation and is of questionable impartiality.  His appearance will be designed to confound, distort and obscure.  As the front man in the Clinton White House’s culture to conduct caustic personal attacks on Clinton critics, his testimony, imaginably, will be deeply imbued with partisan resentment than exculpatory evidence.  In Blumenthal’s judgement, the committee’s subpoena is the act of a deliberately hostile enterprise and his single, overriding goal is to defend Hillary Clinton by suggesting she is a sympathetic figure or, worse, a victim of a partisan inquisition.

Intersecting secrets can occasionally collide, but since Hillary has since wiped her server clean it’s doubtful we will ever know anything.

[nationalmemo.com] [nytimes.com] [reuters.com]