Imagine my surprise this morning when for the first time Benghazi was not the lead story in the news ... the IRS has taken that slot for the time being.
But I must admit, I wasn't surprised that our so-called "liberal media" didn't lead with a bigger story on Benghazi yesterday, the story of as, it's now being called, the 'edited email' of Ben Rhodes. CNN did lead with it and was the first to report it.
Last Friday ABC News shared an email from Rhodes after the September 11th Benghazi attack. According to ABC's report, the email read: "We must make sure that the talking points reflect all agency equities, including those of the State Department, and we don't want to undermine the FBI investigation. We thus will work through the talking points tomorrow morning at the Deputies Committee meeting."
But now, we are seeing that in the actual email – dated Sept. 14, 2012 and with the subject "Re: Revised HPSCI Talking Points for Review" – Rhodes wrote:
All – Sorry to be late to this discussion. We need to resolve this in a way that respects equities, particularly the investigation.
There is a ton of wrong information getting out into the public domain from Congress and people who are not particularly informed. Insofar as we have firmed up assessments that don't compromise intel or the investigation, we need to have the capability to correct the record, as there are significant policy and messaging ramifications that would flow from a hardened mis-impression.
We can take this up tomorrow morning at deputies.
He sent the email three days after the attack and two days before Ambassador Susan Rice appeared on the Sunday morning talking head programs.
The omission from the original email to what was reported last week changes the entire meaning of the message ... and the messenger. The messenger is Ben Rhodes but technically the messenger is the State Department and at that time who was head of the State Department? Hillary Rodham Clinton
Now Republicans would have you believe that Mrs Clinton was responsible for the deaths of four embassy workers, one an ambassador. Republicans want you to think that she didn't do her job as secretary of state properly or keep America safe. Neither did the president, they say. Translation? Hillary bad ... Obama bad … Democrats bad ... Republicans good. Repeat, rinse, repeat.
But the actual meaning of Rhodes's email is that the State Department was not trying to cover anything up. They wanted the facts, represented in unity and not compromising any security or ongoing investigation. In other words, they were doing their job.
Now Republicans can flash as many photos as they want of Hillary banging her fist on the table when answering questions about Benghazi or of her standing in front of the four embassy member's coffins. But much like the email, Republicans want to alter the facts in your mind about this attack and mostly about Mrs. Clinton.
Recently they have tried to compare Watergate and Benghazi. And there is no comparison. Nixon committed a felony and asked others under him as a sitting commander in chief to do the same. He was impeached. President Obama and former Secretary Clinton broke no laws. Yes they most likely lied due to politics during an election year (surprise, surprise) about a video and then when they were certain and pushed to admit it was a terrorist attack, they came clean. Those words did not change the fate of those four victims.
And the biggest message of all you won't hear from Republicans in an ad on TV or any soundbite on radio is that they're afraid. Afraid that no matter how much they pretend to love black people, immigrants, women and gays; their track record spits in the face of that and the voters know it; afraid of the last election results and the number of Republican seats up for grabs in the House; afraid of losing the House to Democrats and worse, the White House again, to Democrats. But most of all, they're afraid of a woman. And not just any woman, that woman. A woman named Hillary.
For they know that Benghazi didn't prevent Obama's re-election and it won't prevent Mrs. Clinton's election as the first U.S. woman president. They're afraid that she already has the Democratic nomination locked up (and she does) and that they don't have a candidate strong enough to run against her and win. They know their message is not unified and their party fragmented. They know they lost the game – three years before the whistle blows – and not only will that lead to another Democrat as president in 2016, the first female president but that also means Bill Clinton will be back in the White House too. And that's definitely scary for the GOP.