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May 19, 2014

Democrats Are Still Pushing Benghazi Myths

Sen. Claire McCaskill told NBC's Meet The Press yesterday that Sec. Clinton had already said all there is to say about Benghazi. McCaskill went on to push some long-debunked, but persistent Democratic myths about the scandal:

"Of course, [Clinton's] frustration—when she said 'it doesn't matter'—was because she wants to make sure this doesn't happen again, and it was the Republicans that were blocking funding for embassy security. That's why she was frustrated."

There are several things wrong here.

First of all, Clinton didn't say "it doesn't matter." When asked about misleading Obama administration claims about the cause of the attack, she said:

"Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they'd they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make?"

Second, contrary to Sen. McCaskill's claim yesterday, Clinton didn't say anything about embassy security funding when she dismissed concerns about contradictory administration statements about Benghazi.

Finally, and most seriously, it is untrue that Republicans blocked funding for embassy security. Here's Politifact debunking the same myth repeated a few weeks ago on Ronan Farrow's MSNBC show:

Congress did not fully fund embassy security requests from the Obama administration in recent years, which is what Farrow argues amounts to a "cut." But funding for embassy security is up from 2008, and up dramatically since before 9/11.

How does this tie into the Benghazi attack? State Department officials and government experts lay more blame on decisions by upper management not to provide the temporary Benghazi facility with more officers and better protections than the availability of money.

Farrow made that very point in his segment, which makes it odd that he led his segment by tying the attack with insufficient congressional funding.

We rate his claim Mostly False.

BONUS Benghazi Bluster: Perhaps fearful she is falling behind in the Stupid Soundbite Game, Sen. Feinstein told CNN's State of the Union that she thinks the House Select Committee is "a hunting mission for a lynch mob." Stay classy, Sen. Feinstein.


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posted by Gabriel Malor at 10:14 AM

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