During today’s congressional hearings over the Benghazi attacks, retiring Democratic Rep. Gary Ackerman (NY) used his speaking time to attack the Republican Party and personally apologize to the State Department officials for their being brought before Congress as part of a GOP partisan “ruse.”

“I want to first start by apologizing to the deputy secretaries because you have been brought here as a ruse,” Ackerman pointedly said to the testifiers seated before microphones along a table before him. “You are being used as foils to the conflicting intentions of some people on our committee and others in Washington for partisan political purposes.”

He continued to tear into the Republicans for helping Congress to become a “partisan bickering bunch of grousing old people trying to exploit whatever we can to our political advantage.”