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Susan Rice is under increasing Republican attacks.
Although she hasn't been officially nominated to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for President Obama's second term, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice is under increasing attacks from Republicans. Those have been going on for several weeks now over remarks she made and purportedly made, in the aftermath the lethal attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi Sept. 11. Sen. Lindsey Graham and Sen. John McCain have been in the forefront of these attacks, vowing a filibuster if the president actually nominates her. Now, even though they don't have vote in confirming or rejecting Rice if she is nominated, 97 House members have sent a letter to the White House calling on Obama not to nominate her:
Ambassador Rice is widely viewed as having either willfully or incompetently misled the American public in the Benghazi matter. Her actions plausiblty give U.S. allies (and rivals) abroad reason to question U.S. commitment and credibility when needed. Thus, we believe that making her the face of U.S. foreign policy in your second term would greatly undermine your desire to improve U.S. relations with the world and ocntinue to build trust with the American people.
The representatives also complain about allegedly being denied access to information that would answer questions they have about what happened on Sept. 11 and its aftermath:
Recent reports of discrepancies between the Department of Defense and the Central Intelligence Agency's public timelines of the event on September 11 only exacerbate the problem and we believe these inconsistencies deserve closer examination.
The Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs has been holding classified briefings on the Benghazi matter. It was doing so at the very time McCain and Graham were preening before the press last Thursday with their broadside against Rice, promising to block her nomination and calling for an independent investigation. The Arizona senator is a member of the Homeland Security committee. Two of its key members—the independent Joe Lieberman, who chairs it until January, and Republican Sen. Susan Collins—said during a break in the briefing that no independent investigation is needed.
While there is no doubt the need for a sober assessment of what happened in Benghazi and what should be done to try and prevent future attacks, that is supposed to be the job of the senators now asking questions behind closed doors. While plenty can be said about too much government secrecy and misleading ever since the national security state started becoming a reality 65 years ago, the brassy partisanship of Republicans in this matter is no secret. They would be sending letters and lining up votes in support of the brazen liar John Bolton for secretary of state if Mitt Romney had won. And any objection raised would be greeted with cries of "soft on terrorism." They are nothing if not predictable.
Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:33 PM PST.