White House Press Secretary Jay Carney Gets Blasted Over Benghazi


jay carney


White House Press Secretary Jay Carney faced a fusillade of questions Friday about the administration's response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, amid new reports that show the White House scrubbed the official talking points about the tragic incident.


The questions stemmed from a new ABC News report, which reveals that in the days after the attacks, the White House and the State Department excessively edited the official talking points to remove all references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia, as well as to CIA warnings about jihadist terrorist threats in Benghazi prior to the attack.

Until now, the White House has claimed that those discredited talking points — which characterized the attacks as a spontaneous demonstration in response to an anti-Islamic video — were entirely crafted by the intelligence community based on their understanding of the attacks at the time.

Barraged with questions about the new revelations, Carney did an elaborate word dance that failed to provide any substantive answers accounting for the White House's role in crafting the talking points.

Instead, he stood by the administration's initial claim that the CIA was responsible for the talking points, saying that the White House had merely "suggested" revisions. That assessment contradicts the emails, which show the White House brokering revisions to those suggested by the State Department.


He even claimed that the talking points were correct, except for the references to demonstrations before the attack.

"Even then it was couched — in all iterations it was couched," he added.

Predictably, Carney accused Republicans — including Mitt Romney — of politicizing the attacks and of leaking the White House emails to the press.

"Efforts to refight the political battles of the past are not looked on kindly by the American people," he said.

As Carney continued to wilt, commentators eviscerated his performance on Twitter: