Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, reiterated what could become a go-to attack line for a would-be presidential campaign over the weekend, saying that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s response to the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attack on a U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya, precludes her from becoming president.
“Hillary Clinton got cable after cable to protect the consulate in Benghazi. And what did she do? Nothing,” Mr. Paul told supporters in Reno, according to the Gazette-Journal. “I say, Hillary Clinton’s behavior of not providing adequate support should absolutely preclude her from ever being considered as president.”
The State Department has been faulted for inadequate security leading up the attack, which left four Americans dead, including the U.S. Ambassador to Libya but a recent bipartisan report from the House Intelligence Committee largely cleared the CIA of intentional wrongdoing in the run-up to the attack.
Mr. Paul’s comments drew a response from a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, who cited Mr. Paul’s past support for cutting foreign aid and last year’s partial shutdown of the federal government as reasons that he should not be considered for president.
“If Rand Paul wants to talk about what’s ‘disqualifying’ for being president, he should look in the mirror,” said DNC spokesman Mo Elleithee. “Spreading conspiracies about Benghazi, which even an investigation by the Republican-controlled House Intelligence Committee found that the CIA and military acted properly and that there was no wrongdoing by the Obama administration, is disqualifying.”
“Rand Paul is deft at political primary trolling, but being president is a lot harder than that,” Mr. Elleithee continued. “On the issues that matter most to our security and economy, he’s disqualified himself from any serious consideration.”