About two hours into Hillary Clinton's much-awaited appearance beforethe House select committee investigating the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, the boredom and outrage cracked through the facade. She began to shrug her shoulders, lean her chin on her hand, and raise her eyes to the point of rolling them.
She let her exasperation show every time she uttered the words "previously," "again," and "as I said before."
By the time the morning session ended, the hearings had devolved into the partisan exercise that many had predicted.
But at least at first, the Republican chairman of the panel, Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, seemed to take pains to avoid the impression that the investigation's real purpose was to bring down the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, as his colleague Kevin McCarthy famously gaffed.
So Gowdy was solicitous of the former secretary of state, letting her take the oath behind closed doors rather than having to raise her right hand in public like a tobacco company executive.