Renowned Beltway Talent Scout, John McCain, Gives Susan Rice Two Thumbs-Down
One of the names that has floated to the top of the Potential Hillary Replacement List has been that of Susan Rice currently serving as the US Ambassador to the United Nations. Getting wind of that, John McCain had one of his signature “McCain hissy fits” on Fox News, today, vowing to do everything in his considerable senatorial power to block any such nomination:
Susan Rice should have known better and if she didn’t know better, she’s not qualified. I will do everything in my power to block her from being the United States secretary of state.
She has proven that she either doesn’t understand or is not willing to accept evidence on its face.
This all started when McCain appeared on Face the Nation, a week after the attack, along with Rice and the president of the Libyan National Assembly. At some point, the Libyan guest shared his opinion that everyone knew the attack was led by al Qaeda. According to McCain, Rice should then have based her comments more on the Libyan gentleman’s surmise rather than the talking points provided by the CIA, at the time, which McCain deemed “irrelevant.”
According to the Washington Post, those CIA talking points affirmed what Rice said on the Sunday shows that week. When pressed on that point, McCain, as he sometimes does when his dander’s up, became slightly incoherent:
Because it was four dead Americans. She told the American people on every major newscast in America. If a select committee, if appointed, clears her of any wrongdoing — besides not being very bright, because it was obvious this was not a, quote ‘flash mob.’ There was no demonstration.
Just for the hell of it here are Susan Rice’s actual “not very bright,” “incompetent” comments on the matter:
On Face the Nation, for example, she carefully told Bob Schieffer that she couldn’t yet offer any “definitive conclusions,” but that “based on the best information we have to date” it appeared that there had been a spontaneous protest in Benghazi “as a reaction to what had transpired some hours earlier in Cairo where [...] there was a violent protest outside of our embassy sparked by this hateful video.”
She then immediately added: “But soon after that spontaneous protest began outside of our consulate in Benghazi, we believe that it looks like extremist elements, individuals, joined in that effort with heavy weapons of the sort that are, unfortunately, readily now available in Libya post-revolution. And that it spun from there into something much, much more violent.” When Schieffer pressed her on whether the attack had been preplanned, or whether al-Qaeda was involved, she said directly that we simply didn’t know yet.
And here’s Kevin Drum with the sane people’s view:
They [Congress] have every right to investigate Benghazi, which might very well have been handled poorly in some respects and which might have been a case of poor anticipation of an attack that should have been expected. But Rice’s conduct was fine. She very carefully, and very professionally, passed along what was, at the time, the considered judgment of the intelligence community. Some of it was wrong, but there was no coverup. There was just new information and new analysis over time, which is exactly what you’d expect following an incident like this.
Evidently, McCain hates to lose any opportunity to yell al Qaeda in a packed theater. Plus, he now gets to bang a drum for “Water-gate-type” hearings in the hope, I guess, that Obama will go hide under the bed or be forced to resign over a terrorist attack that he didn’t see coming in his Magic 8 Ball.
Let’s not forget that this is the same guy who figured it was a great idea to have Sarah Palin one (crotchety-old-man-with-anger-management-issues) heartbeat away from the Oval Office.
War’s over, Buddy. Republicans lost. Have a beer . . .