Amidst significant pressure from the Senate Intelligence Committee, the White House has agreed to release emails pertaining to the changed talking points concerning the September 11th, 2012, attacks on the consulate in Benghazi that left four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, dead.
The Senate has been pursuing answers to some of the many questions swirling about in the aftermath of the attack. They have questioned the inaction of government officials to aid in the rescue of our citizens and have questioned President Obama’s inattentiveness during the attack.
The Senate has, however, specifically focused on the false narrative pushed by the Obama Administration and Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was questioned about the talking points which Rice pushed on Sunday talk shows in the aftermath of the attack. When asked about who changed the talking points, Clinton now-famously replied,” With all due respect, the fact is we have four dead Americans. Whether it was because of a protest or because guys outside for a walk one night decided to go kill some Americans. What difference at this point does it make?”
However, as Americans have still demanded answers on Benghazi and have demanded to know why they were so vehemently lied to in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, the Senate has applied significant pressure on the White House to release emails that illustrate who changed the talking points and who was instrumental in actively pushing a story that the White House knew was false.
“’We expect that will be done early next week,’ [a Congressional source] said, adding the administration has agreed to the Senate Intelligence Committee’s request to review the emails.
The source did not immediately make clear whether members of the committee would go into a room and read the emails, or whether hard copies would be permanently supplied to the committee.
The source noted that the committee has already seen details on how the controversial talking points were changed from their original drafting. Terms like Al Qaeda were stripped out, which led Republican lawmakers to charge the talking points were deliberately watered down — it’s unclear which versions of the talking points members of the Senate committee might see.”
It is likely that the releasing of the emails is an attempt to lessen pressure by the Senate where several members have threatened to hold up the nomination of prospective CIA Director John Brennan. Senator Lindsey Graham threatened earlier this week that he would block Brennan’s nomination until he gets answers on the terrorist attack and, specifically, answers on who changed the talking points because, “We have two or three versions of who changed them.”