He doesn’t use the phrase “cover up” — but Ryan does, in saying that it’s up to Americans to decide why The One is reluctant to use the word “terrorism” to describe what happened in Benghazi even though some of his underlings aren’t. And yes, this talking point is officially part of the Romney/Ryan message on the trail today. CNN asked the same question that Carl Cameron did and got a similar answer:
When pressed on whether he stood by the attack, Romney said, “I’m not sure which developments in the Middle East he would consider bumps in the road.”
He then suggested the Obama administration was trying to hide the truth behind what really happened in Benghazi.
“The White House’s failure to acknowledge that – that the assassination of our ambassador was a terrorist attack, a terrorist event – suggests that they are trying to paper over the seriousness of what’s happening in the Middle East,” Romney told CNN.
Cameron actually gives Mitt an opportunity to go for the throat at 3:15 by asking whether he thinks Obama’s “bumps in the road” comment is a case of him misunderstanding the Middle East or a knowing attempt to minimize what’s happened there this month to cover his own ass. Romney’s answer: It’s proof that Obama misunderstands. Not sure I’d have gone the same route but that fits, at least, with the thrust of Mitt’s message that O’s in over his head on all things presidential. More of this, please — while bearing in mind Ace’s point that the economy is still the silver bullet here.
Update: And here’s why the “cover up” claim is being pushed today:
Republican senators on Tuesday demanded answers from U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice on whether her public statements on the deadly consulate attack in Libya mirrored what she knew about the attack.
The senators, in a letter to Rice, specifically asked if she knew about a video and other intelligence that appeared to foretell the fatal attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, but still told the American public the attacks appeared to be a “spontaneous reaction” to an early attack in Egypt.