We’re not making scandals the way we used to.
The House of Representatives has now voted, virtually along party lines, to create the Benghazi Select Committee that conservatives have long called for. The atmosphere of scandal that has surrounded Bill and Hillary Clinton for decades has gotten, at least temporarily, a renewed lease on life.
Will the committee produce enough news to revive the idea of the Clintons’ dubious past and inject the poison of illegitimacy into Hillary Clinton’s much-speculated 2016 presidential campaign?
Not likely. Today’s political scandals seem unable to develop the momentum needed to exert real political influence. There’s sound and fury — adding up to an electoral and prosecutorial nothing.
But does this mean the newest Benghazi investigation will end the scandal, one way or another? That’s even less probable. It’s more likely that Benghazi will join the parade of zombie scandals that hover between life and death for what seems an eternity.
For months House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) resisted conservative calls to appoint a select committee. Then the conservative monitoring group Judicial Watch got hold of an email showing that a White House official had told then-U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, before she appeared on the Sunday talk shows to discuss the attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya, to portray it as “rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.”