The Blog

Boehner Weighs In on Benghazi Talking Points

4:22 PM, May 8, 2013 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Widget tooltip
Single Page Print Larger Text Smaller Text Alerts

House speaker John Boehner is criticizing the White House's reaction to the revalations, first reported by Stephen F. Hayes for THE WEEKLY STANDARD, that the administration's talking points on the terrorist attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi last September were altered. From a press release from the speaker's office:

It’s well documented that in the days and weeks following the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, the Obama administration conveyed to the American people a wholly inaccurate account of the events.  The talking points used by senior administration officials, including U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, had been altered to remove any references to the participation of Islamic terrorists in the attack and the previous terrorist threats in the area.  For months, the White House has suggested it had no part in editing the talking points – which served as the United State’s government’s official explanation of what took place that night.  We now know those claims aren’t true.

Again today the White House said that changes made to the talking points were made almost exclusively by the intelligence community, ignoring the fact that senior White House and State Department officials directed the CIA to change those talking points.  Hiding behind the CIA, the President’s spokesman claimed this afternoon that White House changes amounted to a single word, for “stylistic” purposes. However, the recent disclosure by a five-committee investigation of internal email correspondence demonstrates that substantive edits – nearly a wholesale rewrite – were directed by White House and senior State Department officials to the CIA....

...it’s clear that the State Department and White House were deeply involved in re-drafting these talking points.  Cynically claiming that the White House bears no responsibility for the talking points because a CIA officer physically made the changes is the kind of evasion that won’t fly with the American people. The question isn’t who was sitting at the keyboard; it’s who decided not to tell the American people the truth.  The White House should make these emails public and explain to the American people their motives for stripping the talking points of critical information.

Recent Blog Posts

The Weekly Standard Archives

Browse 15 Years of the Weekly Standard

Old covers