Rep. Darrell Issa ripped the State Department on Twitter today for heavily redacted records related to Hillary Clinton’s involvement in the Obama administration's response to the 2012 Benghazi, Libya, terrorist attacks.
However, though Issa suggested the redacted document was sent to the Benghazi Select Committee, which is investigating the circumstances surrounding the attack, the committee actually received an unredacted version, according to committee aides. The heavily redacted version Issa tweeted was actually the one publicly posted on the State Department website last month as part of its release of Clinton's emails as secretary of state.
Issa, one of the administration’s fiercest critics in his former role as chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, tweeted out a picture Tuesday of a 15-page document that was almost completely redacted, claiming the document was sent in that form to the Benghazi Select Committee. By mid-afternoon, the post had been retweeted more than 100 times.
“This fifteen-page redacted report is, unfortunately, not a fluke, but a typical example of the kind of petty gamesmanship we’ve come to expect from the ironically self-proclaimed ‘most transparent administration ever,’” Issa, R-Calif., wrote in a statement to ABC News.
Issa added that “the repeated efforts to deny access to official correspondence and keep the American people in the dark about official actions raise serious questions about Secretary Clinton’s judgment and fitness for public office.”
The document Issa tweeted appears to be an emailed draft copy of a speech by Clinton that was included in the Freedom of Information Act release of Hillary Clinton’s emails last month.
However, an aide at the Benghazi Select Committee noted that the document was not redacted at all in an earlier version sent to the panel on Feb. 13, 2015.
An aide to Issa did not immediately respond to inquiries seeking clarification on Issa's assertion that the committee received a redacted version.
Both the subject line on the emailed document on the State Department website and the title of the attachment in Issa's tweet was “cgi draft v3 092212.docx” -- likely indicating that it was related to the Clinton Global Initiative. Clinton delivered a speech Sept. 24, 2012, at a conference hosted by the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City and attended by the media.
The scant information that was publicly released on the State Department website shows that the email was sent by Jacob Sullivan to Clinton on Sept. 22, 2012 -- less than two weeks after the Benghazi terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2012.
“Megan is working on a development speech but please read the below if you can this afternoon,” Sullivan noted in the only portion of the email that was not blocked from public view. “Let me know your thoughts.”
Sullivan, viewed as one of Clinton’s most trusted advisers, was serving at the time as the former secretary’s deputy chief of staff and director of policy planning.
Clinton is expected to publicly testify at the Select Committee at some point, although the timing of her appearance has not been determined.