By Ryan Teague Beckwith
October 6, 2015

California Rep. Kevin McCarthy isn’t even Speaker yet, and he’s already starring in a negative ad from Hillary Clinton.

The Republican frontrunner to lead the House of Representatives is off to a rocky start after he bungled a television interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity last week, saying that a special committee on Benghazi helped bring Clinton’s poll numbers down.

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?” the current House majority leader told Hannity. “But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought.”

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Clinton has hammered the point since then, arguing that McCarthy’s comments show the Benghazi investigation is trying to make “a partisan political issue out of the deaths of four Americans.” Her new ad takes that line to the airwaves too.

The ad shows news footage about the gaffe as well as a brief segment of McCarthy’s interview, arguing that it shows “Republicans finally admit it.”

“Republicans have spent millions attacking Hillary because she’s fighting for everything they oppose, from affordable health care to equal pay,” the ad says. “She’ll never stop fighting for you and the Republicans know it.”

 

Republicans plan to meet Thursday, where McCarthy may be endorsed as speaker. But he will need 218 Republican votes on Oct. 29 to get the job, and his rival for the post, Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz, says he is confident McCarthy will not get the votes.

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