- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 1, 2014

For the second straight day, the White House struggled to explain its rationale for withholding an email from Congress that discussed then-UN Ambassador Susan E. Rice’s infamous “talking points” about the terrorist attack in Benghazi.

White House press secretary Jay Carney, again confronted with questions about the administration’s attempt to keep the document a secret, tried to deflect the inquiries by talking about everything from Republicans’ failure to help the administration create jobs to the military’s killing of Osama bin Laden to Republicans’ alleged failure to beef up security at diplomatic facilities overseas.

“This is a conspiracy theory in search of a conspiracy,” Mr. Carney said of the furor over the White House’s internal email.

Asked by a reporter if the White House has been as forthcoming as possible on Benghazi, Mr. Carney replied, “I really don’t know how to answer that, except to say that we have provided an enormous amount of information. We have answered a ton of questions.”

Responding to a House hearing Thursday in which a top GOP lawmaker said the withholding of the document was “possibly criminal,” Mr. Carney replied, “I wish that rather than spending so much of their time …. on this and on repealing the Affordable Care Act, Republicans in Congress actually got about the business of helping the economy grow and helping it create jobs and making the necessary investments for the economy to grow in the future.”

A government watchdog group obtained the previously undisclosed email through  a lawsuit. The email, written by Deputy White House national security adviser Ben Rhodes on Sept. 14, 2012, included talking points for Ms. Rice’s upcoming appearances on TV shows. He said that she should emphasize anti-U.S. protests in the Muslim world — including the deadly attack in Benghazi —were in response to an anti-Islam video, not a failure of administration policy.

 

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