If the NSC Principals Committee did not discuss Libya as part of their briefing on “9/11 threats and mitigation efforts,” then it would seem to be an example of gross negligence. If they did discuss Libya, then Americans deserve to know what they told the president about the security situation in that country one day before our ambassador was killed. And if the president was in fact briefed on the growing al-Qaeda threat in Benghazi a day before the attack, it would further call into question the administration’s efforts to blame the attack on a YouTube video.

The only way to answer these questions is for the administration to release the records relating to the September 10 NSC meeting — including any briefing slides or papers prepared for the meeting. Those records will tell us a great deal about what the president knew — and when he knew it.