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CNN's O'Brien Furiously Spins to Blame Republicans in Congress for Dead in Benghazi
NewsBusters.org ^ | October 10, 2012 | Matt Vespa

Posted on 10/10/2012 8:30:00 PM PDT by Kaslin

With a House Oversight committee slated to hold a hearing on the deadly Benghazi consulate terrorist attack at noon today, there was really no excuse for CNN's Starting Point to not cover the story. But alas, anchor Soledad O'Brien checked her journalistic credibility at the dressing room door, going on air with Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) sounding more like an Obama apologist than a hard-nosed reporter.

O'Brien questioned Rep. Chaffetz -- who chairs the House Subcommittee on National Security, Homeland Defense and Foreign Operations -- on his claim that this administration hasn’t been forthcoming with the facts surrounding the attack. O’Brien countered by admonishing the congressman for suggesting “collusion” between the Obama White House and the State Department. O’Brien’s hackery became overt when she indirectly blamed Congressman Chaffetz for being complicit to the lack of security at our embassies by voting to cut off their defense funding, attempting to dilute any blame the administration has for lax security by trying to lay blame on Republicans in Congress:

REP. JASON CHAFFETZ: Well, I mean, look at the statements after the attack. You had Jay Carney, the White House spokesperson. You had the ambassador to the U.N., Susan Rice. You have the State Department comments coming out.

Now we come out to find that those were absolutely not true. They are somewhere between totally false and absolutely not true. It's certainly -- 



SOLEDAD O'BRIEN: I think that that's an exaggeration, Congressman.



CHAFFETZ: No.

O'BRIEN: Well, let's play them then.



CHAFFETZ: What is true about what she said?



O'BRIEN: Well, let's first play the -- what Ambassador Rice had to say. I think she's the one who went on September 16th on "Meet The Press" went further than everybody.

We don't have that clip. As you know, she said that she believed it looked like it was connected to protests. She went the furthest. But Jay Carney, I think that was on September 18th, actually said something not going quite as far. So I think we have her sound bite. Let's play the ambassador first.



(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)



SUSAN RICE, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: Putting together the best information that we have available to us today, our current assessment is that what happened in Benghazi was, in fact, initially a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired hours before in Cairo. It's almost a copycat demonstration against our facility in Cairo, which was prompted, of course, by the video. 



(END VIDEO CLIP)



O'BRIEN: It was Jay Carney who did not go as far. So my question for you would be when you say there was some kind of collusion. That was a very serious charge. Where are you seeing evidence of collusion between the State Department and the White House? 



CHAFFETZ: Well, if you actually look at what Jay Carney said, I can pull up another clip for you and I think he actually goes even further. And when President Obama was asked directly on "The View" and on other situations, he led people to believe there was a video.

Remember, we have a document that we is now out there in the media, 230 security interests -- attacks and other threats against Western interests. Our facility there in Benghazi was bombed twice prior to this.

How can you -- coming up on 9/11. We're in Libya. It's been bombed twice. The British ambassador there in Benghazi, an assassination attempt -- then we're led to believe that there was no reason to believe that we were under threat there in Benghazi?

We have people testifying today that is not the case. When that intelligence information comes forward, it doesn't go just to the State Department. It also goes to the White House.

That's why we have a National Security Council. So for the White House to claim ignorance on this is absolutely, totally not true.



O'BRIEN: Is it true that you voted to cut the funding for embassy security?



CHAFFETZ: Absolutely. Look, we have to make priorities and choices in this country. We have -- think about this -- 15,000 contractors in Iraq. We have more than 6,000 contractors, a private army there for President Obama in Baghdad.

And we're talking about can we get two dozen or so people into Libya to help protect our forces? When you're in tough economic times, you have to make difficult choices how to prioritize this.



O'BRIEN: OK, so you're prioritizing. So when there are complaints that, in fact, that there was not enough security, you've just said absolutely, that you cut.

You are the one to vote against, you know, to increase security for the State Department, which would lead directly to Benghazi. That seems like you're saying you have a hand in the responsibility to this.



CHAFFETZ: No.



O'BRIEN: Right? The funding of the security, you're happy to cut it? How am I wrong?



CHAFFETZ: Because there are literally close to 200 embassies, consulates, those types of things. You have thousands of people that are involved in this. You have to prioritize things.

Libya, before 9/11, two bombings on or consulate out there, of course, that's got to be a higher priority than making sure we're protecting some other emphasis.



O'BRIEN: But if there’s pressure – we just heard from one of the clip that's going to testify before you today that there was definitely this pressure, in his mind, to not staff the embassy fully security wise. Wouldn't that pressure be coming from you directly, essentially, people and others who voted against funding for security? Keep it low because there's no funding for security. 



CHAFFETZ: You're also talking about a vote that never came to fruition because we actually continued at the exact same funding levels moving forward. This is a vote that happened at the House. 
Remember, the Senate never got to this point. So we did a continuing resolution. It's a red herring. The reality is you have to prioritize things and when you're talking about such a small, small number of security personnel there in country, that's a problem.

Another thing we're going to talk about in this hearing is the fact that the physical facilities themselves did not meet the minimum standards. When you're in Libya after a revolution, I've got to argue that that's got to be a higher priority than protecting some other, you know, compound in (inaudible) or whatever you might be. I don't mean to pick on them.

But you've got to prioritize things and what clearly didn't happen is Libya was not a priority. I believe what I heard is that it's because they wanted the appearance of normalization. That's what they wanted. That fit the Obama narrative moving forward.



O'BRIEN: It will be interesting to see what comes out of your hearing today. It's nice to see you as always. Thank you for talking with us.



CHAFFETZ: Thanks, Soledad.

First of all, Soledad’s conspiratorial drivel is pathetic. Of course, the White House and the State Department collude. It’s called governing. It’s called being part of the overall Obama administration – operating in an area that is a rather significant part of the president’s job description.

Second, the story centers on the state of our security concerning our embassy in Libya. It’s not whether Rep. Chaffetz’s vote to cut off embassy security funding had a hand in the death of Ambassador Stevens. As the congressman said, “There are literally close to 200 embassies, consulates, those types of things. You have thousands of people that are involved in this. You have to prioritize things. Libya, before 9/11, two bombings on or consulate out there, of course, that's got to be a higher priority than making sure we're protecting some other emphasis.”

For O’Brien, President Obama and his officials weren’t at fault for this fiasco. It was the Republicans who added “pressure” with their votes to cut off embassy security funding and it, in no way, had to do with President Obama missing almost half of his intelligence briefings and his State Department not knowing what was going on five days before the attack.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2012congressional; benghazi; benghazihearing; chaffetz; foreignpolicy; impeachnow; libya; repjasonchaffetz; soledadobrien; waronterror

1 posted on 10/10/2012 8:30:07 PM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin
Soledad O'Brien checked her journalistic credibility at the dressing room door

Uhhh... I'm not sure she had any to check in the first pale.

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2 posted on 10/10/2012 8:33:51 PM PDT by newheart (The greatest trick the left ever pulled was convincing the world it was not a religion.)
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To: Kaslin

CNN does get paid for these services.


3 posted on 10/10/2012 8:36:27 PM PDT by TigerClaws
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To: Kaslin

That dog won’t hunt. Are they trying to tell us that he who spews forth executive orders like vomit couldn’t figur out how to save four lives? That is nonsense. When has Congress ever stopped him?


4 posted on 10/10/2012 8:43:43 PM PDT by Truth is a Weapon (Truth, it hurts so good.)
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To: Kaslin

O’Brien is a ditz. Her act got old a long time ago.


5 posted on 10/10/2012 9:08:45 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (Sorry Algore. It was attitude, NOT altitude.)
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To: Kaslin

Why was Ambassador Stevens in such a high-risk place on 9/11 with little to no security??? THAT is the question! He should’ve been assigned to Tripoli that week, NOT Benghazi. He was ‘set up’.


6 posted on 10/10/2012 9:10:00 PM PDT by Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America
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To: Truth is a Weapon
a few hours prior to this many hundreds of thousands of dollars was spent at the French embassy on a grand ribbon cutting party extolling the virtues of the chevy volt, and green energy, replete with ball gowns and champagne. Can't buy the “we weren't properly funded b. s.

Heck , the fed will print more money in honor of a sunrise and we supposedly can't fund a hyper important security screen in yet another islamic country that is being taken over by our enemies.

Because of this administrations failure to even have a conscious understanding of the nature of the islamic threat, Obama’s utter failure to deal with this issue ,
the constant and damaging security leaks from this white house that invite failed military operations AT THE CONSIDERABLE COST IN BLOOD, Obama and his criminal cabinet should not only lose the presidency but should be tried for murder.

BLAME FOR THIS FAILURE IS A DIRECT RESULT OF THE WHITE HOUSE AND THE DEPT. OF STATES UTTER AND COMPLETE FAILURE TO

1UNDERSTAND THE WORLD AROUND THEM
2REALISTICLY DEAL WITH THE FACT OF ISLAMOFASCHISM.
3BE WILLING TO PATHOGIACALLY LIE TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AT A MOMENTS NOTICE IF IT FURTHERS OBAMA'S ULTIMATE GOAL OF TAKING THIS GREAT PEOPLE DOWN THE SOCIALIST/COMMUNIST RATHOLE.

7 posted on 10/10/2012 9:12:36 PM PDT by ping jockey (We have arrogant jerks for leaders and WE will pay the highest cost.)
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To: Kaslin

You know what? I’m starting’ to buy in to this stuff. Poor Obama. He just never had a chance to be a leader. He got steam-rolled by Republicans every inch of the way. Solidad, thank you for shining a light on this issue. Poor Obama. Um, so why do you want to re-elect poor Obama?


8 posted on 10/10/2012 9:18:35 PM PDT by FryingPan101 (2016 looms)
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America

They hired a local militia in Benghazi called the February 17th Martyrs Bridgade and paid them $30 per day stipend. The background check for the February 17th Martyrs Bridgade is simply: “Yo...you got an AK-47?”

What’s to worry about?

Forward!


9 posted on 10/10/2012 9:20:32 PM PDT by Fitzy_888 ("ownership society")
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To: Fitzy_888; StarFan; onyx; SC Swamp Fox; upchuck; visualops; TheStickman; 4everontheRight; Tatze; ...
They hired a local militia in Benghazi called the February 17th Martyrs Bridgade and paid them $30 per day stipend. The background check for the February 17th Martyrs Bridgade is simply: “Yo...you got an AK-47?”

Unbelievable. I'm watching some of the the re-airing of today's Capitol Hill hearings on C-SPAN right now... my blood is boiling.

God bless Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) by the way...

10 posted on 10/10/2012 9:38:34 PM PDT by nutmeg (I'm with Sarah Palin and Ted Cruz: Romney / Ryan 2012)
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To: Kaslin
"Was there any budget consideration and lack of budget which lead you not to increase the number of people in the security force there?”

“No, sir,” said Charlene Lamb

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/329977/top-revelations-libya-hearing-katrina-trinko
11 posted on 10/10/2012 9:45:06 PM PDT by yellowhammer
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To: Fitzy_888

I watched th hearings today and any time they referred to the February 17th Martyrs Bridgade - they said Febuary 17th or 17th Bridgade. Martyrs was always omitted.


12 posted on 10/10/2012 10:46:39 PM PDT by bronxville (Margaret Sanger - “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population,)
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To: Kaslin

Pathetic, even for ol’ Soley. Even if State Department security funding had been cut (it wasn’t), even the most nominally competent leadership would have found a way to reallocate assets to priority locations.

The administration dropped the ball in Benghazi, and they’ve added insult to injury by trying to foist a narrative that a 5th-grader could see through onto the American people.


13 posted on 10/10/2012 11:22:18 PM PDT by DemforBush (100% Ex-Democrat.)
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To: DemforBush
On election night I can truly see this individual hyping tensions live on TV nationally, if Romney wins, and subliminally encouraging uncivil, pissed off entitled-class people to take to the streets in civil disorder and anarchy out of anger. I would not put it past this O'Brien individual. I really would not put it past her to start LA type riots on a national basis, hyping the race card. Watch this one closely.

14 posted on 10/11/2012 12:03:02 AM PDT by AmericanInTokyo (Donate, & walk precincts, not for "Parties", but for individual, principled "Candidates" (& for FR)
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To: Kaslin
Don't let this story die... Nixon was forced to resign for less.

This leads right to the top, just like Watergate.

Can't wait for the rats to attack each other with finger pointing and recriminations...




15 posted on 10/11/2012 12:26:02 AM PDT by Bon mots (Abu Ghraib: 47 Times on the front page of the NY Times | Benghazi: 2 Times)
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To: Kaslin
[Transcript, quoting Soledad O'Brien]
So when there are complaints that, in fact, that there was not enough security, you've just said absolutely, that you cut. You are the one to vote against, you know, to increase security for the State Department, which would lead directly to Benghazi. That seems like you're saying you have a hand in the responsibility to this.

Notice how quickly O'Brien recriminates against the congressman: You cut. You have a hand in ... this.

Fifty bucks in the dark, she spent 40 minutes on the phone before the interview, talking to White House staff, just like Georgie Clintonopoulos and his cellular hotline to Rahm and Begala and Serpent Head.

16 posted on 10/11/2012 1:26:28 AM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: FlingWingFlyer

If you look at O’Brien’s numbers....she’s not getting any real viewership. Probably more folks watching local reruns of Seinfeld or the Andy Griffith Show at that time-slot, than her CNN show.

Last week, they noted that all four prime-time hours on CNN are now lower than the Fox Morning Show, the combined hour of Stewart and Colbert on the Comedy Channel, or any of the six prime-time hours of Fox News. Piers Morgan isn’t even worth mentioning anymore. They could replace Piers with Barry Bonds, and I think the hour would stay about the same.


17 posted on 10/11/2012 2:10:11 AM PDT by pepsionice
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To: Kaslin
FYI, the vote that allegedly cut this funding was 149 Democrats and 147 Republicans.

HR 2055

Elijah Cummings has been leading this talking point, and he voted for HR 2055.

Chaffetz voted against the bill that allegedly cut the funding.

18 posted on 10/11/2012 4:29:44 AM PDT by justlurking (The only remedy for a bad guy with a gun is a good WOMAN (Sgt. Kimberly Munley) with a gun)
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To: justlurking

So in other words more rats were for the cuts. What hypocrites


19 posted on 10/11/2012 4:46:46 AM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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To: Kaslin

It’s that pesky Mr. Bush who’s responsible for all this.

/sarcasm/


20 posted on 10/11/2012 5:03:08 AM PDT by ripley
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To: ripley

Naturally, who else


21 posted on 10/11/2012 5:04:29 AM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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