White House: Buck Stops With Hillary on Libya
Today, the White House finally revealed its policy on embassy security: keep President Obama out of the loop so he can claim plausible deniability and blame Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for any problems. In today’s White House press conference, a reporter asked press secretary Jay Carney about the situation in Libya. Carney responded:
The President wants to get to the bottom of what happened. Your own network interviewed the President and asked him about the situation in Benghazi, so I would refer to what the President said.
He is committed to finding out what happened. He is committed to making sure that those who killed four Americans are brought to justice, and he is committed to ensuring that actions are taken after the Accountability Review Board thoroughly assesses this matter, to make sure that what happened in Benghazi never happens again. …. He's not blaming it on anything. This is under review, it is under investigation. And I would encourage everyone to assess that review when it's completed.
Sounds great. Except that when a reporter asked if President Obama would be notified about security procedures at US embassies, Carney quickly demurred:
Q I want to follow on Ann’s question. She asked if the President was upset when he learned that he had not been told about these requests for extra security and that kind of thing. Has he now asked to be informed about such security requests? Or has he given any instructions that they should not be turned down, or that he or his designate should be informed?
CARNEY: It is absolutely the case the President is intensely focused on and committed to bringing to justice those who killed four Americans. He is focused on the investigations continuing so that they can follow the facts all the way to the end so we know what happened and why. He is committed to ensuring that we take the appropriate actions after the Accountability Review Board to ensure that what happened in Benghazi does not happen again. What is also the case is that requests from the hundreds of diplomatic facilities around the country for security personnel or other related matters are made to the State Department. They are not made to the White House. And that’s just a simple statement of fact.
In other words, Obama’s saying that the buck stops with Hillary Clinton. She’d best be prepared to feel the tire tread as she makes her way beneath the Obama campaign bus.