Fox News chairman Roger Ailes said on Wednesday that he would like to know what the country’s Commander-in-Chief was doing on the night terrorists attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi last September.
“I have come to the conclusion that even I don’t care what the President of the United States was doing that night,” Ailes said in his remarks while accepting the prestigious Bradley Award. “However, I would like to know what the Commander-in-Chief was doing that night.”
Ailes noted Fox News Channel finished its 137th consecutive month in first place in cable news and said part of the reason for the network’s success is that it relentlessly covers news stories like Benghazi “we know others will not.”
“We covered Benghazi when four Americans were killed, even though no other network would touch the story,” Ailes said. “It’s an important story because it involves two hundred years of our military ethos, which is: If we ask you to go out in the middle of the night and risk your life for America, we promise that we will backstop you. And, try to get you out if it is humanly possible. In Benghazi we did not do that.”
Ailes and Fox News were ultimately vindicated when evidence came to light that the Benghazi attacks did not occur due to a spontaneous response to an anti-Islam video. Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both implied that an anti-Islam video was responsible for the attacks, even though evidence now suggests they both clearly knew that was not the case.
Four Americans lost lives last September due to a terrorist attack. The Obama administration, which was in an election year, immediately altered talking points and changed its story about when it knew the attacks may have been related to terror.
Obama’s schedule on the night of the attacks has not been released, and questions remain about whether he gave the “stand down” order to prevent troops from aiding Americans who were under attack, or if he was even briefed about the attacks in real time. Obama promptly attended a fundraiser and campaign events in Las Vegas the day after the attacks.
The Bradley Foundation awarded Ailes the Bradley Award, which honors visionaries like Ailes “who shape America” before a packed audience at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Ailes said he would match the $250,000 prize awarded to him and donate it to charity.
Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, and National Affairs founding editor Yuval Levin also were honored this year. Past honorees include Jeb Bush, Thomas Sowell, and Victor Davis Hanson.