Update: GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy cancels appearance at "Beyond Benghazi" fundraiser

South Carolina Republican slated to appear at even fundraising off attack he's investigating -- then cancels

Published March 9, 2015 4:38PM (EDT)

  (AP/J. Scott Applewhite)
(AP/J. Scott Applewhite)

UPDATE, 1:00 p.m. EDT: The Washington Post reports that Gowdy will no longer attend the Virginia GOP's "Beyond Benghazi" fundraiser, and the congressman's office denies Gowdy knew the event would exploit the 2012 attack. “The Chairman was unaware that organizers of this event intended to feature or even mention Benghazi,” a Gowdy spokesman said in a statement to the paper. “He has not raised money using Benghazi, and will not speak about Benghazi at fundraising events. Having been made aware of this group’s plan, he no longer will be participating in the event.”

South Carolina congressman Trey Gowdy, the Republican chairman of the committee investigating the 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate at Benghazi, will appear later this month at a Republican fundraiser exploiting the tragedy, National Review reports.

Gowdy is slated to be the featured speaker at the Virginia GOP's "Beyond Benghazi" fundraising event in Richmond, which donors must pay $75 to attend. For $5,000, attendees can serve as co-sponsors.

The congressman is expected to focus the bulk of his remarks on the Benghazi attack; the Virginia Republican Party is promoting the event with the hashtag #GowdyOnBenghazi.

As Politico's Lauren French points out, Gowdy's scheduled appearance is at odds with his previous statement that he would not fundraise off the attack.

“I have never sought to raise a single penny on the backs of four murdered Americans,” Gowdy told the hosts of "Morning Joe" in May.

Appointed by House Speaker John Boehner last year to lead the House Select Committee on Benghazi, Gowdy has made headlines in recent days for his criticism of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's exclusive use of a personal email account to conduct government business during her four-year tenure at the State Department. On Sunday, Gowdy said on CBS News' "Face the Nation" that "[t]here are gaps of months, and months, and months" in the emails Clinton has divulged to his committee.

By Luke Brinker

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