Blumenthal says he's not the author of Libya memos to Hillary

This excuse is right up there with "The dog ate my homework."

Hillary Clinton ally Sid Blumenthal told the Select Committee on Benghazi that he did not write any of the Libyan intelligence he sent to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, but that he simply cut and pasted intelligence reports from a business partner, former CIA agent Tyler Drumheller.  At the time, Blumenthal was a $10,000-a-month consultant to the Clinton Foundation.  He was in Libya, with Drumheller and others, to drum up business opportunities in the near-failed state, and it has been suggested that he was looking for help from the State Department to get contracts from the new government.

Politico:

“One of the folks providing her the largest volume of information was simply and merely a conduit of someone who … may have had business interest in Libya,” said panel Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) at the end of a nearly nine-hour interview. “We have a CIA, so why would you not rely on your own vetted source intelligence agency? In this case, there was no vetting, no analysis of credibility whatsoever.”

Blumenthal, meanwhile, maintained that his practice of forwarding such memos was unsolicited and that he was not being compensated for gathering or passing along the information, according to sources who were in the room.

Reading from a script after huddling with his lawyer following the deposition, Blumenthal blasted the committee for hauling him in to testify in the first place.

“It seems obvious that my appearance before this committee was for one reason and one reason only … politics,” he said, accusing the panel of “spen[ding] hours asking me questions about things that had nothing to do with Benghazi.”

“I hope I have cleared up the series of misconceptions some members of the committee may have held,” he added. “My testimony has shed no light on the events of Benghazi — nor could it — because I have no firsthand knowledge.”

Republicans subpoenaed Blumenthal, the panel’s first deposition, to answer questions about why he was sending Clinton unsubstantiated intelligence on Libya, which GOP investigators say constitute or are referred to in more than 35 percent of Clinton’s emails.

Blumenthal said he did so as a friend because “I thought they might be informative for Secretary Clinton to use, or not, as she saw fit.”

The memos were useless gossip, or regurgitated news reports.  The amatuerish Blumenthal sent them in the first place hoping to curry favor with the upper echelons of the State Department because he wasn't getting anywhere in getting contracts with either the coalition helping to run Libya or the new Libyan government.

Interestingly, Blumenthal gave the committee aabout 60 e-mails that may have been deliberately withheld by the State Department and Mrs. Clinton:

Republicans pushed Tuesday to release those emails immediately, but they need the minority’s approval to waive a five-day rule requiring notification before such distribution. Democrats, however, said they would waive the rule only if the GOP released the full committee transcript to ensure Blumenthal can explain the context of his emails.

“If we’re going to release them we ought to release Blumenthal’s comments about them so that we can put them in context,” said Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the top Democrat.

Gowdy said they may add context, but that would mean “treat[ing] this witness differently than we’ve treated every other witness.”

By day’s end, the committee still hadn’t agreed to release the new emails.

Said Cummings: “There is no smoking gun.”

Blumenthal had nothing to do with the Benghazi investigation, but the revelations about his communications with Hillary reflect poorly on her, which is why the Republicans had him testify. It was a dubious use of the committee's subpoena powers, as Gowdy is being stonewalled at every turn by the White House, the State Department, and intelligence agencies.  Blumenthal is a Democratic slug, but his actions in Libya relate only tangentially to the issue of what happened and who was responsible for the breakdown that led to the death of four Americans.

This excuse is right up there with "The dog ate my homework."

Hillary Clinton ally Sid Blumenthal told the Select Committee on Benghazi that he did not write any of the Libyan intelligence he sent to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, but that he simply cut and pasted intelligence reports from a business partner, former CIA agent Tyler Drumheller.  At the time, Blumenthal was a $10,000-a-month consultant to the Clinton Foundation.  He was in Libya, with Drumheller and others, to drum up business opportunities in the near-failed state, and it has been suggested that he was looking for help from the State Department to get contracts from the new government.

Politico:

“One of the folks providing her the largest volume of information was simply and merely a conduit of someone who … may have had business interest in Libya,” said panel Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) at the end of a nearly nine-hour interview. “We have a CIA, so why would you not rely on your own vetted source intelligence agency? In this case, there was no vetting, no analysis of credibility whatsoever.”

Blumenthal, meanwhile, maintained that his practice of forwarding such memos was unsolicited and that he was not being compensated for gathering or passing along the information, according to sources who were in the room.

Reading from a script after huddling with his lawyer following the deposition, Blumenthal blasted the committee for hauling him in to testify in the first place.

“It seems obvious that my appearance before this committee was for one reason and one reason only … politics,” he said, accusing the panel of “spen[ding] hours asking me questions about things that had nothing to do with Benghazi.”

“I hope I have cleared up the series of misconceptions some members of the committee may have held,” he added. “My testimony has shed no light on the events of Benghazi — nor could it — because I have no firsthand knowledge.”

Republicans subpoenaed Blumenthal, the panel’s first deposition, to answer questions about why he was sending Clinton unsubstantiated intelligence on Libya, which GOP investigators say constitute or are referred to in more than 35 percent of Clinton’s emails.

Blumenthal said he did so as a friend because “I thought they might be informative for Secretary Clinton to use, or not, as she saw fit.”

The memos were useless gossip, or regurgitated news reports.  The amatuerish Blumenthal sent them in the first place hoping to curry favor with the upper echelons of the State Department because he wasn't getting anywhere in getting contracts with either the coalition helping to run Libya or the new Libyan government.

Interestingly, Blumenthal gave the committee aabout 60 e-mails that may have been deliberately withheld by the State Department and Mrs. Clinton:

Republicans pushed Tuesday to release those emails immediately, but they need the minority’s approval to waive a five-day rule requiring notification before such distribution. Democrats, however, said they would waive the rule only if the GOP released the full committee transcript to ensure Blumenthal can explain the context of his emails.

“If we’re going to release them we ought to release Blumenthal’s comments about them so that we can put them in context,” said Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the top Democrat.

Gowdy said they may add context, but that would mean “treat[ing] this witness differently than we’ve treated every other witness.”

By day’s end, the committee still hadn’t agreed to release the new emails.

Said Cummings: “There is no smoking gun.”

Blumenthal had nothing to do with the Benghazi investigation, but the revelations about his communications with Hillary reflect poorly on her, which is why the Republicans had him testify. It was a dubious use of the committee's subpoena powers, as Gowdy is being stonewalled at every turn by the White House, the State Department, and intelligence agencies.  Blumenthal is a Democratic slug, but his actions in Libya relate only tangentially to the issue of what happened and who was responsible for the breakdown that led to the death of four Americans.