“Who the president called and did not call on that night matters, not only to Fox News hosts.”
posted at 10:22 am on February 11, 2013 by Mary Katharine Ham
The Washington Post media critic concedes there may be a story here after all. First, Eric Wemple notes CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s attempts to get answers from the White House, which were repeatedly rebuffed. But Sen. Kelly Ayotte was able to take up the torch at Benghazi hearings, questioning Sec. Leon Panetta directly:
Ayotte coaxed these admissions out of Panetta:
AYOTTE: Did you have any other further communications? Did he ever call you that night to say how are things going, what’s going on, where is the consulate?
AYOTTE: Did you communicate with anyone else at the White House that night?
AYOTTE: No one else called you to say, what, how are things going?
Fox News sees significance behind the revelations. Sean Hannity last night tilted at the possibility that the president had done “AWOL” on Benghazi. Today the network has produced various follow-ups on the story. The rest of the media? Not a lot there, if searches of Google and Nexis are any indication. The confirmation hearing of CIA director nominee John O. Brennan, the case of Christopher J. Dorner and a Northeastern snowstorm have buried the Panetta story.
Well, yes, the Benghazi story has often been buried as other stories continue to take precedence, and I suspect it’s not always because said stories are more important. Wemple’s conclusion is one I hope shows up on the WaPo editorial page or will become evident in its reporting, which is right now focusing on whether it’s “appropriate” for Sen. Lindsey Graham to hold up nominations to force answers on Benghazi:
The call for greater and greater detail on just what the president was doing on the night of Sept. 11 has strong footing: The United States, after all, lost an ambassador and three other personnel to terrorists on the anniversary of Sept. 11. Precisely who the president called and did not call on that night matters, not only to media critics and Fox News hosts, but also to the American public and the families of the Benghazi fallen. Even if the details may not expose a full-on scandal.