Gowdy Urges GOPers Not To Fundraise Off Benghazi, But NRCC Already Has


This post has been updated.

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who is leading the House select committee to investigate the Benghazi attack, on Wednesday advised his fellow House Republicans to refrain from fundraising off of the committee.

However, just before Gowdy made the comment, the National Republican Congressional Committee sent out a fundraising email mentioning the select committee and asking supporters to help fund Republicans so that they can continue efforts to investigate Benghazi, as the Huffington Post noted.

The hosts of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” asked Gowdy if members should stay away from fundraising off of the committee.

“Yes, and I will cite myself as an example. I have never sought to raise a single penny on the backs of four murdered Americans,” Gowdy responded, as recorded by the Huffington Post. “Even in a culture of hyper-partisanship, [there are] certain things that ought to be above politics, like the murder of our four fellow Americans, and whether or not you can trust what any administration – Republican or Democrat – tells you in the aftermath of a tragedy.”

The NRCC’s Wednesday morning email mentioned the select committee and linked to BenghaziWatchdogs.com, a website the organization set up that focuses on Benghazi and includes links to contribute money.

“A new Select Committee headed by South Carolina Congressman Trey Gowdy and appointed with special powers by Speaker John Boehner will begin a thorough investigation of what happened that night,” the email read, according to the Huffington Post.

The email also linked to a contribution page urging supporters to become a “Benghazi Watchdog.”

Though the NRCC does not seem to have a problem fundraising off of its own pet scandal, the committee slammed Rep. Kyrsten Sinema’s (D-AZ) fundraising email mentioning veteran deaths at the VA Phoenix Medical Center.

“It’s troubling that Congresswoman Sinema is fundraising off this shameful scandal. This is beneath the dignity of her office and she owes the veterans in her district an apology,” NRCC spokesman Matt Gorman said in a statement Tuesday.

Sinema’s campaign has since apologized for the email, which was the result of a mistake made by one the campaign’s consultants, Anne Lewis Strategies. The company used the wrong email template, which sent supporters to the incorrect landing page, the campaign said.

When asked by TPM about the difference between the two scandals, the NRCC responded with a comment about the importance of investigating the Benghazi attack.

“The Obama administration has not been honest with the American people with regards to the security failures in Benghazi, which left four Americans dead. Our goal is to hold Democrats in Congress accountable who vote against creating the select committee on Benghazi and who continue to try to sweep this controversy under the rug,” Gorman said in a statement to TPM.

A Republican candidate challenging Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) is also fundraising off of the Benghazi select committee, the Huffington Post reported.

Andy Tobin, the speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives, asked for donations so that he can help investigate the Benghazi attack in Congress.

“Americans were not fooled then and, despite the Obama Administration’s best efforts, we are still not fooled. Rep. Trey Gowdy being named to lead the House Select Committee on Benghazi is a very encouraging development,” the email read. “Arizona’s 1st Congressional District needs a battle-tested representative in Congress who will faithfully represent your voice, who will fight for your conservative values and who will always seek to uncover the truth.”

Sahil Kapur contributed reporting.

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