The Republican lawmaker who once led an 11-hour congressional hearing on Benghazi now says such public hearings are “utterly useless,” according to The Daily Beast.
Former Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina said during an appearance on Fox & Friends that last week’s public hearing with former Trump attorney and “fixer” Michael Cohen was unnecessary.
“What we learned this past week is how utterly useless public congressional hearings are,” Gowdy said. “I think two closed-door sessions this past week on the Senate and House side with the intelligence committees were very helpful. That is why they’re bringing Cohen back.”
“The closed-door hearings are constructive,” the Republican continued. “You get an hour to ask questions as opposed to five minutes.”
But in 2015, Gowdy relished the opportunity to lead the GOP questioning of Hillary Clinton over the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi that left four Americans dead.
At the time, Gowdy chaired both the House Select Committee and the House Oversight Committee.
Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy asked Gowdy if he was suggesting Democrats were merely using the hearing to make President Donald Trump look bad ahead of the 2020 election.
Gowdy responded: “Let me ask you this: What serious finder of fact can you name that identifies information in five-minute increments and does it on television and flips from one side to the other? Grand jury doesn’t do it. Your local sheriff doesn’t do it. The United States attorney doesn’t do it.”
Doocy then reminded Gowdy of his own history wielding public hearings as a political tool, saying, “You tried to do it in a past” — to which the former lawmaker responded, “And I was an utter unmitigated failure.”