Biden does Benghazi II: Things get Interesting

| October 13 2012
Greg Conterio

When faced with dishonesty or incompetence, White House chooses the latter.

I had been planning on doing a recap and analysis of some of Biden’s biggest lies, I mean “mistakes” and “exaggerations” from the other night.  Team Obama was clearly nervous about “Uncle Joe” going up against uber-wonk Paul Ryan, and had spent considerable effort stuffing his head with facts and figures before the debate.  Unfortunately for them, the container appears to have been too small to hold all the necessary data, as it came spilling-forth from Biden’s mouth with sometimes hilarious results, like when he started reciting facts (incorrectly, as it turns out!) about Syria and Libya like a junior high student trying to impress his geography teacher.

But as it happens, the irrepressible David Leeper has provided an excellent recap of Biden’s “gaffes” and any additional effort on my part would be needlessly repetitive, and without a doubt compare poorly.  Besides which, there have been developments to the Benghazi story which promise to become very interesting indeed!

In Biden does Benghazi, I covered the Vice President’s astonishing claims regarding the attack in Libya.  Well, it appears in deciding between continuing denial and dishonesty, or incompetence, the White House decided to go with incompetence.  In explaining Biden’s claim during the debate that there were no requests for additional security from the Libyan consulate, a claim in direct opposition to widely reported testimony to the contrary only one day earlier before congress, the official line from the White House is Obama and Biden were never made aware of these multiple requests.  Upon hearing this, I immediately wondered if all those skipped daily briefings might not have something to do with this!  I find this statement inconceivable.  How in the world could any president be unaware of repeated requests for continuing or additional security in circumstances as sensitive and dynamic as those in Libya?  We are not talking about the U.S. consulate in Switzerland here.  Libya is only months past overthrowing its government, and is struggling daily with civil order and the establishment of a new system of government, and you expect me to believe the White House is not apprised daily of what is happening there?  If this is true, and the White House was really out-of-the-loop about something as fundamental as the safety and security of our people on the ground there, it speaks to a shocking degree of incompetence and indifference.  Since the question of obviously inadequate security in Libya is plainly central to the cause for the deadly attack on September 11, there is the possibility the White House is lying about their direct knowledge of the matter in order to insulate themselves from the fallout.  If having to pick between being grossly incompetent and directly responsible, incompetent starts to look pretty attractive.

Time will tell whether the White House’s story is true, but in either case, there is another inescapable problem the President faces: Hillary Clinton.  By pinning responsibility for the security failure on the State Department, the White house has effectively thrown Hillary under the bus.  Obama may have hopped out of the frying pan, into one uncomfortably-warm fire.  Consider for a moment: it doesn’t matter whether the story that the White House didn’t know about security requests is true or not.  If it’s not true, does anyone seriously think Hillary is going to fall on her sword for them and take the wrap?  Or does it seem a tad more likely, Hillary being a Clinton after all, that conclusive proof that the president knew all about the security requests will magically wind up in the public domain, proving him to be responsible, incompetent AND a liar?  If the story is true, and Obama & Biden were out-of-the-loop on security requests, this is a career-ending, legacy-ending event for Hillary.  Being a Clinton after all, does anyone seriously expect she will resign in disgrace, and go quietly into retirement?  Or that Bill, who has been one of the only people in the Democrat Party who has demonstrated an ability to move the polls in Obama’s favor, will continue stumping for him?  How likely does THAT seem?

We do indeed live in interesting times.  An October Surprise is often regarded to be a planned, orchestrated event, like the revelation of George W. Bush’s 1976 DUI arrest just days before the 2000 election.  But sometimes they come in the form of outside events that reveal things about a candidate in ways we might not ever have known.  Benghazi is just such an event, and is telling us things many have long suspected about the Obama administration in a conclusive way neither campaign could have managed.

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