Congressman Peter King (R-NY), the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, was still demanding answers about Ambassador Susan Rice and the response in Libya on “Meet the Press” this morning.
Congressman King: “First, let me just say, I think Susan Rice has done and effective job as UN Ambassador — especially on issues such as North Korea but on this she was wrong. The reason I say that is, if she’s sent out there to speak to the American people on what happened in Benghazi, she is obligated to do more than look at three sentences of unclassified or five sentences of unclassified talking points. Because that was basically a cover story. She had access to all of the sensitive top secret classified information, and she knew that the story she was giving out was not entirely true. She knew that parts had been taken out, for whatever reason — which we still haven’t found out. So I think that she should have been much more modulated in what she said. She gave the clear impression that she thought we came from the demonstration and the video and that is not the case. She certainly toned down, almost minimized the issue of the terrorist threat. If there was any security reasons for doing that, she should not have emphasized it as much as she did about the video and the demonstration. Because that gave the totally wrong message to the country.”
David Gregory, NBC: “But do you have any [reason] to believe that she was not relying upon an assessment given to her by the intelligence community?”
Congressman King: “Yeah, because that was incomplete and she knew it was incomplete. She has access to the most top secret classified information. As UN Ambassador, and as someone in the chain of command at the State Department, she has an obligation not to just be a puppet and take what’s handed to her in an unclassified way. She should have sat down — now did she sit down with the National Security Counsel? Did she sit down with David Petraeus or General Clapper? Who did she sit down with to find the full story? As the UN Ambassador she has to know that a very condensed set of unclassified talking points tell you almost nothing. She had an obligation to get the whole picture. If she didn’t get the whole picture, she failed in her responsibility.”