How is the White House going to respond to the incoming revelations coming out of today’s Congressional hearing on the terrorist attack that killed four Americans in Benghazi? …Exactly the way they have been, if today’s press briefing is any indication. Republicans are on a partisan tear, we’ve already covered all of this, no Obama admin higher-ups really did anything wrong, The End.
This administration has made extraordinary efforts to work with five different Congressional committees investigating what happened before, during, and after the Benghazi attacks… As the New York Times reported this morning, much of what the witnesses were expected to raise in the hearings today has already been addressed both in hearings and the Accountability Review Board report. This is a subject that has from its beginning been subject to attempts to politicize it by Republicans, when in fact what happened in Benghazi was a tragedy… That review board issued a report that was unsparing and highly critical in some areas… Given the remarkable level of cooperation that we’ve demonstrated with Congressional committees and investigators thus far, demonstrates again that we’re at a place where there are attempts to politicize this when that should not be the case. … What remains the case is that the intelligence community, the CIA, drafted these talking points, and redrafted these talking points. The fact that there are inputs is always the case in a process like this, but the only edits made by anyone here at the White House were stylistic and non-substantive. … Ultimately, this all has been disguised and reviewed and provided in enormous levels of detail by the administration to Congressional investigators and the attempt to politicize the talking points, again, is part of an effort to chase after what isn’t the substance here…
(Brief pet-peeve sidebar: What is it with all of the “remarkable” and “extraordinary” adjectives in reference to the administration’s cooperation with Congress? Carney manages to make it sound like the administration is doing a bunch of magnanimous favors by even giving this Congressional investigation the time of day, and yet I’m pretty sure the White House works for us. Just sayin.’)
As to those dastardly Republicans’ attempts to “politicize the talking points”? Okay, sure — for a moment, let’s go ahead and accept that the White House’s changes to the talking points were merely “stylistic” in nature. That does nothing to solve the question of who specifically did alter the talking points and construct a false narrative for the public weeks away from the presidential election, because that stupid video and subsequent “spontaneous protests” were not even a thing in Libya. For all of their “extraordinary efforts,” the White House certainly doesn’t seem to care much.