Skip to comments.Clinton fails to convince Republicans on administration's account of Libya attack
Posted on 09/20/2012 4:18:17 PM PDT by jazusamo
Republican lawmakers left a closed-door briefing with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other officials on Thursday still unconvinced by the administration's assessment that last week's attack that killed four Americans in Libya wasn't a premeditated act of terrorism.
They're trying to cover their behinds, Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas) told The Hill upon leaving the House briefing with Clinton, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter. Asked if they were successful, he said: No.
On the Senate side, things were no different according to Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) That is the most useless worthless briefing I have attended in a long time, shortly after the administration officials made their case to the upper chamber.
I really think they hurt themselves tremendously from the standpoint of trying to build trust," he told reporters. It, if anything, built far greater distrust in whats happening than in answering questions. It was pretty unbelievable.
For his part, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the information provided to lawmakers on Thursday was nothing new and that lack of information has become a trend with the White House.
"From this administration, I have never gotten information that I have not seen or heard before," McCain said. Including Thursday's Libya briefing, the White House has maintained "a perfect record" in that regard, he added.
Republicans for the past week have been assailing the Obama administration's position the consulate attack was not a coordinated strike, but a protest in reaction to a U.S-made anti-Islam video on YouTube that turned violent. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice first made the remarks on the Sunday news shows over the weekend, basing her comments on the initial intelligence available.
The administration has since started to call the attack an act of terrorism, but continues to argue it was unplanned. Clinton and the other officials briefed all House and Senate members for the first time Thursday.
I believe that it's really a stretch a long stretch to believe that all of this by coincidence happened on 9/11, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) told The Hill after the briefing. He said his opinion hasn't changed, even though that's not necessarily what they're telling me.
But Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, told reporters it was clear what happened in Benghazi last Tuesday.
It was a planned, premeditated attack, he said. It's pretty obvious [Stevens] did not have adequate security, he added.
The administration's previous claims the attack was simply a protest gone horribly wrong and current argument the attack was unplanned simply "sets our efforts back" to address al Qaeda's growing influence in Libya, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) added.
But not all Republicans were as willing to chastise the administration's lack of disclosure during Thursday's briefings. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), ranking member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he thought it was a good briefing.
I would disagree, Lugar said when asked about complaints from other lawmakers. I felt it was very comprehensive.
Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) also defended the level of information the administration gave to lawmakers.
I feel that we received a briefing that was comprehensive, Feinstein told reporters.
I dont believe they were holding back. I think they said what they knew," she added. "Theyre very concerned and they want to do this right and put the evidence together and make the case that will stand.
Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), who helped write the Embassy Security Act after the 1998 attacks on the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, said he was confident the truth would come out even if it's after the election. Clinton announced Thursday that retired Ambassador Thomas Pickering has been selected to lead an independent investigation into the Libya attack, which is due to Congress within 60 days.
We still don't know how long it took them to put this whole attack together, does it comport with a timeline of when the movie came out ... so we're still in the learning stage, he said. I always want to trust but verify.
Carlo Muñoz and Jeremy Herb contributed.
Good post and info, TE. Thanks!
...it looks like the MSM is through covering for them.
You forgot your sarcasm tag. This MSM is the OPM, i.e., the Obamugabe Propaganda Ministry, and they will continue to shill and distort for the Soros Administration until they are given different orders.
So the republicans will hold a huge dance and pony show and some low level state dept lackey will get the boot....sort of like fast and furious. F**k all of them....There,I said it.
You’re welcome. Why do we know more about this situation than the guy who wrote the Embassy Security Act? All I have is DirecTV and an internet connection. And I haven’t used the TV.
Why......does ...H-i-ll-a-ree Cuh-lin-ton al-ways sah-ou-nd la-eek she .....is talk-ing to ver-ry sssmaaw-ell..chil—duh-ren?
Es-pe-shul-ly when..she is ..spee—king to pee—pull from...oTH-ur cunt-—reeezz?
No kidding. Lugar’s been a disaster. The New Start Treaty is incomprehensible if you are concerned with your country’s security.
Now and then I wonder if House and Senate members don’t have a high enough clearance to read FR!?! ;^)
Thank you Jazusamo, I always appreciate your kind words!
Zero will be the first presumptive pResident to issue himself a blanket pardon upon his exit from public service.
IMHO Hillary is knee deep in this, she is covering her own butt, as well as o’s. She is state dept, she is the one who sent him there, she is also the one pushing gay rights over there in exchange for aid.
My sentiments exactly! Since when is this America’s reaction when an Ambassador is murdered? It isn’t in what they call a war zone, where is the collective outrage??? This is despicable!