Pelosi Says Benghazi Is 'Diversion'

At a press conference Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi dismissed a new “smoking gun” email about the Obama administration's response to the Benghazi terrorist attack as “diversion” and “subterfuge.”

“I haven’t seen it, but I will say this again--diversion, subterfuge--Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi. Why aren’t we talking about something else?” Pelosi said in response to a question from Breitbart News. “What I know of what I’ve read in the press about the emails was what was put out there before. I don’t think there was anything new there.”

Pelosi further challenged the idea that the White House was trying to hide something because a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit was required to obtain the email, as opposed to a subpoena from Congress:

It didn’t have any additional information, but I want to tell you something. In scope of the subpoena that--whatever his name is ... Issa was putting forth, it did not include that email. A FOIA is a different story. So you can’t say what you would put out on a FOIA what you should have done under a subpoena. That’s not what the subpoena encompassed. It isn’t that different than what else was out there.

Republicans said the White House only released the email in question--which had been demanded via subpoena for months--at the same time it released the document to Judicial Watch.

Republicans also claimed the new document showed that the White House misled the public about the tragic events at Benghazi because of fears about how the incident would play in the presidential election, then only weeks away. 

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told Breitbart News, “The email would never have been made available to the American people if it weren’t for an independent judiciary. That’s all you need to know about this White House--their story--that they’re transparent--that they want to be honest.” He added, “The truth is they’re not honest when Carney said yesterday this email had nothing to do with Benghazi. It’s insulting my intelligence and disrespectful to those who died serving their country. Clearly, it’s all about Benghazi.”

Pelosi questioned Republican priorities, asking why the party does not focus on other issues besides the Benghazi attack:

It’s going to be a very interesting debate about the priorities. As our Chairman Mr. Israel would say, 'Whose side are you on?' We don’t want to have it be that we want to be everybody on the same side of the American people, and that is why many of us do what we do to engage in the political process, because the policy makes a difference to the American people. It’s going to be an exciting debate. And if you all want to sit around and talk about Benghazi, you can sit around and talk about Benghazi, but the fact is, that’s a subterfuge. They don’t want to talk about jobs, growth, immigration, voting rights--you name it.

Graham, however, responded to Pelosi’s remarks by saying:

 The Democratic Party, to their everlasting shame, has been an enabler of an administration who has lied and manipulated for political purposes. We’ve had a history of bipartisanship. When Gitmo came up, I didn’t write it off as a small thing. It was a big thing. Abu Ghraib was a system failure. Benghazi was a system failure. The House Democratic response is shameful. It’s disrespectful to those who have served and are serving. It’s disrespectful to their families.

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