House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) on Thursday issued a new subpoena requiring Secretary of State John Kerry to testify on Benghazi, accusing the State Department of using “slippery” tactics to try to wiggle out of having Kerry appear.
Issa’s new subpoena demands that Kerry testify before his committee on May 29.
Issa lifted his first subpoena requiring Kerry to testify on May 21 after the State Department said it was seeking another date because Kerry is due to be in Mexico at the time.
“But soon after I lifted the subpoena, the State Department backtracked – stating publicly that we should accept ‘a more appropriate witness’ and refusing to commit to making Secretary Kerry available,” Issa said in a statement. “With this State Department’s slippery tactics, it’s no wonder our friends in the world are losing faith in us and our adversaries doubt our credibility.”
Issa said the State Department had discussed the idea of sending an official over on May 29, which is why he set May 29 as the firm date in the new subpoena.
“Further accommodation will not be possible,” Issa said. “Absent an assertion of executive privilege, the State Department has a legal obligation to fully and completely comply.”
Republicans have been hounding the Obama administration for the last few weeks on Benghazi, after a newly released email indicated that the White House purposefully ignored intelligence on the cause of the attack that left four Americans dead. The House has already voted to create a select committee to investigate further, but Democrats have not said yet whether or how they will participate in those proceedings.