Sen. Dick Durbin blamed Republicans fear of Hillary Clinton dominating the 2016 Presidential election on the obsession with turning Benghazi into a major scandal. He called the whole thing part of the "political show" in the election's build up. "Unfortunately, this has been caught up in the 2016 presidential campaign, this effort to go after Hillary Clinton," the Democrat's No. 2 in the Senate said on CBS's Face the Nation. Durbin said Clinton was never interviewed for the Accountability Review Board investigation because she didn't have "direct line responsibility" for the decisions relevant in the Benghazi scandal. But Republicans want to bring her in for questioning "because they think it’s a good political show," he said. Durbin said there was no cover-up, but characterized the decision to revise the Benghazi talking points as "a squabble between two agencies, the CIA and the State Department." Durbin said there is no credibility to attacks on former Secretary of State Clinton for Benghazi despite what some right wing media and politicians would have you believe. "It is unsubstantiated, and yet the witch hunt continues," he said.
Rep-elect Mark Sanford holds no hard feelings for the Republicans who deserted after he was caught having an affair and removed from office. "I’m a Republican who has always had an independent streak that would be the best way to define it. The past is the past," the South Carolina Republican said on Fox News Sunday. "I look forward to working with the Republican team." Sanford said he learned a lot since he was busted for having an affair with an Argentinian woman while claiming he was hiking the Appalachian trail. "I learned a lot about judgment. I learned a lot about forgiveness," Sanford said. "I could go down a litany of things. I’ll boil it down this way: Our minister gave a great sermon a few months back and his point was, 'Do the events in our life refine or define your life?' In politics, people want to take an event and make it definitional to your life. I think in any of these valleys or bumps can be refining points."
Sen. John McCain wants more Benghazi investigations and more Hillary Clinton testimony. He told ABC's This Week that he wants a "select committee" to investigate what exactly happend on September 11. "I’d call [Benghazi] a cover-up in the extent that there was willful removal of information which was obvious," McCain said Sunday. "There are so many questions that are unanswered. We need a select committee," McCain added. He also had very strong words for Press Secretary Jay Carney. "For the president’s spokesman to say there were only words or technical changes made in those emails is flat out untrue. I like Mr. Carney, but that’s just unacceptable for the president’s spokesman to say that to the American people," he said. McCain also theorized that the claim Clinton didn't know anything about the Benghazi attacks doesn't make sense. "She had to have been in the loop," he claims. "Her response before the Foreign Relations Committee when she said, ‘who cares how this happened?’ in a rather emotional way. I’d say, with all due respect, the American people care."
Sen. Dianne Feinstein told NBC's Meet the Press that the talking points issued to Susan Rice before her infamous tour of the Sunday talk shows was wrong and that the White House should have said the September 11 attacks were carried out by terrorists much sooner. "I think the talking points were wrong," the Senate Intelligence Committee chair said. "I think the talking points should not be written by the intelligence community." There was one particular area that they could have made clearer. "Unfortunately," she said, "the word extremist was used which is not as crystal clear as terrorist." Feinstein argued the State Department and CIA deserved some criticism for their handling of the issue. But also that Republicans are driving the issue as a way to attack and discredit Hillary Clinton ahead of a potential Presidential run. "My concern is that when Hillary Clinton’s name is mentioned 32 times in a hearing that the point of the hearing is to discredit the secretary of state who has very high popularity and might well be a candidate for president," the California Democrat said. "I understand that the Republicans have a grievance because this happened a month before the election and every effort has been made to turn it into something diabolic. And I don’t see that."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.