- Associated Press - Friday, January 30, 2015

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Friday he won’t give up his pursuit of the facts about the deadly attack in Benghazi, Libya, even though the committee he chairs isn’t involved in the investigation.

Chaffetz, the new chair of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said Friday he’ll personally support the special House committee that is handling the inquiry.

The Republican from Utah who recently won a fourth term in Congress spoke at the University of Utah during an event where he was honored as the state’s politician of the year by the Hinckley Institute of Politics. During a question-and-answer session, Chaffetz touched on several topics.



Chaffetz, 47, told students that it is imperative the country fully understands the events leading up to and the day of the September 2012 attacks on a U.S. post in eastern Libya that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. He doesn’t believe all the facts have been released.

“I’m not going to let go of it until we know everything that happened: the good, the bad, the ugly,” Chaffetz said. “That’s how we improve, that’s how we get better.”

Chaffetz is not a member of a House committee handling the inquiry, which is chaired by Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., but he said his committee will still be looking at Libya in general, which he said is a “disaster” and haven for terrorists. Chaffetz said his committee can also provide oversight to ensure changes recommended by the panel are implemented.



Chaffetz isn’t backing down from his stance that Congress should strip the National Football League of its tax exempt status. He announced Wednesday, just days before the Super Bowl, that he’s again sponsoring a measure that would force the league to pay taxes.

Chaffetz says leagues like the NFL and the National Hockey League are for-profit businesses that earn millions of dollars a year and should be taxed as such. Currently, NFL and NHL teams are taxable, but their leagues are not.

Chaffetz, a former college kicker at BYU, said the NFL should follow the lead of the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball, who don’t get tax exemptions.

“For the NFL to claim that it’s a nonprofit entity doesn’t the pass the basic laugh test,” Chaffetz, “I want to understand why the NFL thinks it still needs this tax exemption?”

A spokesman for the NFL did not return requests for comment from The Associated Press on Friday.



Chaffetz said he decided early in his political career to maintain an upbeat demeanor even when he doesn’t see eye-to-eye with fellow Republicans or Democrats.

He said House Speaker John Boehner told him upon arriving to Congress: “You can disagree, just don’t be disagreeable.”

“That has really served me well,” Chaffetz, flashing his well-known grin. “You can argue vigorously about issues but if you step over that line and start making it personal then you lose people. … You don’t get a lot done if you are just angry and mad. People just tune you out.”

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide