Susan Rice: Secretary of State?

Susan Rice: Secretary of State?

Congressional pushback

The murders in Benghazi of Libyan Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans on September 11th, 2012 seemed to arouse no outrage on the part of President Obama. The consulate was overrun and razed to the ground while the American citizens inside fought for their lives with light weapons totally inadequate for the task.

Apparently, the administration realized immediately that they were culpable in denying repeated requests for increased security for the embassy. They also realized the attack would put a black eye on the President’s campaign. Initially, Obama only paid brief lip service to the attack in an obvious effort to minimize its effect.

He then continued to campaign, leaving for a rally in Las Vegas the afternoon of the attack, before returning to Washington the next day to take advantage of a memorial to the slain Americans.

At the time the attack was attributed to an anti-Muslim film circulated online by a filmmaker in the United States. The administration even arrested the filmmaker—God only knows what happened to freedom of speech—in an attempt to placate Muslims.

Five days later on the Sunday talk shows U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice stated unequivocally that the murders were due to a spontaneous riot caused by the anti-Muslim film. She also stated that al-Qaida was destroyed and had nothing to do with the murders. This continued to be the storyline for the next five days as Rice continued interviews through electronic and print media.

Now Susan Rice is being put forth by the administration as the replacement for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who is due to retire in 2013.

Her initial meeting with Republican Senators—intended to smooth the way to this appointment—took place on September 27th and is due to continue through September 28th. In the first meeting the majority of Senators were unimpressed by the answers given by U.N. Ambassador Rice while the remainder was openly and aggressively unhappy with her testimony.

While the Republicans don’t have the votes to block the appointment they can filibuster to delay it indefinitely. The entire effort by the Obama administration to cover up the specifics of the attack to minimize its own culpability during an election campaign was obscene and obvious.

This could clearly become a situation where Obama bypasses Congress and the confirmation process to appoint her directly. He would almost certainly welcome the opportunity to do so in his continuing quest to break the backs of the Congressional Republicans.

Look forward to a contentious two years before the Congressional Elections in 2014 decide who will control the House and Senate.