Andrea Mitchell Says Clinton 'Partisans' Dismissed Benghazi 'Witch Hunt' – So Did She

On Friday, MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell observed that the Republican-led Benghazi investigation gained credibility in the wake of the Hillary Clinton email scandal that it uncovered: "Well, the Benghazi investigation by the Select Committee was viewed by many as overkill. That it had all been cleared up back two years ago. And the fact is that some people, certainly the partisans for Hillary Clinton, thought it was a witch hunt. Now they [Republicans] can say, with some legitimacy, 'We didn't have all the emails.'"

However, Mitchell herself was one of those Clinton "partisans" who adopted the "witch hunt" label. In May of 2014, Mitchell led the top of Andrea Mitchell Reports by declaring: "The Benghazi dozen, five Democrats now agreeing to join seven Republican inquisitors after failing to block the new Benghazi probe. Is it a witch hunt or a truth squad?"

Minutes later, she teed up Democratic Congressman Elijah Cummings to denounce the new committee: "And we of course want to ask you about Benghazi....Adam Schiff and you and others, I think, were against playing a role in what could be, you know, a real witch hunt, according to you. It's a seven – it's dominated by seven Republicans. Why even play the game?"

Cummings easily hit the softball: "Well, the fact is, is that we do believe that it's probably a witch hunt. But the fact is, is we have to be in the room, Andrea....And somebody has to challenge the untruths in a very effective way."

Mitchell's guest on Friday, Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd, similarly acknowledged the legitimacy of the Benghazi investigation in light of the Clinton email controversy:

I think the most important fallout from this for her is this issue that it means the congressional investigation's not going away. Not only that, it could get expanded. And it's just always going to be sitting out there as a – they could go weeks without saying anything and all of a sudden it's a three-day distraction, or worse, you know, they want to call it a fishing expedition, but as you know, in some fishing expeditions they catch fish.

Appearing on MSNBC's Morning Joe in May of 2014, Todd dismissed the same investigation: "I feel like it looks like nothing more than a partisan stunt."

Here is a transcript of the March 6 exchange between Mitchell and Todd:

12:13 PM ET

(...)

CHUCK TODD: I think the most important fallout from this for her is this issue that it means the congressional investigation's not going away. Not only that, it could get expanded. And it's just always going to be sitting out there as a – they could go weeks without saying anything and all of a sudden it's a three-day distraction, or worse, you know, they want to call it a fishing expedition, but as you know, in some fishing expeditions they catch fish.

ANDREA MITCHELL: Well, the Benghazi investigation by the Select Committee was viewed by many as overkill. That it had all been cleared up back two years ago. And the fact is that some people, certainly the partisans for Hillary Clinton, thought it was a witch hunt. Now they can say, with some legitimacy, "We didn't have all the emails."

TODD: "We didn't know."

MITCHELL: "How do we know what's out there?"

TODD: "And we don't know what else is out there." And that's what this email situation [does].

(...)

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