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Posted by on Nov 21, 2012 in International, Politics | 13 comments

McCain Officially Admits He Was Wrong on Benghazi Without Admitting It

NOTE: TMVer Dorian de Wind wrote an extensive post HERE about McCain being increasingly isolated, which is updated with this recent news. MUST READING.

If you hear a slight sound, its the sound of an Etch-a-Sketch. I mean, if you lose your best political bud Joe Lieberman, who do you have left? Here’s a statement just issued by Arizona Senator John McCain — a political figure who more often than not no longer comes off looking like a moderate, but more of an aspiring Fox News commentator, someone who these days has looked more like a quintessential sore (Presidential campaign) loser than an actual maverick.

“I am somewhat surprised and frustrated to read reports that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence was responsible for removing references to Al-Qaeda from the unclassified talking points about the Benghazi attack that Ambassador Susan Rice and other officials used in the early days after September 11, 2012. I participated in hours of hearings in the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence last week regarding the events in Benghazi, where senior intelligence officials were asked this very question, and all of them – including the Director of National Intelligence himself – told us that they did not know who made the changes. Now we have to read the answers to our questions in the media. There are many other questions that remain unanswered. But this latest episode is another reason why many of us are so frustrated with, and suspicious of, the actions of this Administration when it comes to the Benghazi attack.”

Crooks and Liar’s Nicole Belle:

Wait, does that mean that John McCain changed his public stance after receiving new and more specific intelligence? Imagine that.

But that doesn’t mean that Grampy McSame likes Ambassador Rice any more than he did last week. Despite being armed with information that exculpates Rice of his major criticism, McCain has not yet retracted his vow to block Rice’s presumptive nomination to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. Of course, it may be that the same man who thought Sarah Palin was imminently qualified to be one heartbeat away from the presidency still thinks that Harvard alum Rice is not ‘qualified’ to be Secretary of State.

I’ve concluded that John McCain is allergic to rice and addicted to acting out in ways so he can show Barack Obama that he still has power and is as relevant as ever.

And I’ve cloncluded the first may be true — but the second is not.

Andrew Sullivan, in his own subtle style, says this:

The irascible douche now acknowledges there is no evidence that Susan Rice was responsible for editing CIA talking points after the Benghazi attack, and that the DNI gave her what she subsequently went on TV with. End of scandal. No formal retraction or apology of course….

Of course, McCain believed it was perfectly obvious that Saddam had WMDs in Iraq. And so did I. I’ve learned to wait for the facts a little bit longer before jumping to conclusions of conspiracy or mendacity.

Well, Andrew, you and others may do that, and it may be the thoughtful, responsible thing for serious people to do, but, hey:

McCain’s a maverick….

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Copyright 2012 The Moderate Voice
  • ShannonLeee

    I think McCain still has sore loser syndrome…much like Romney right now. Losing a Presidential campaign is a devastating thing. Gore was an absolute disaster…he looked like a unibomber for a while. Gore picked himself and renewed. McCain is still angry and he may never get over it, which is sad, because he is still, or was, a very significant and moderate figure in American politics.

  • dduck

    OK, so why isn’t the story about the DNI, now that we have pilloried JM, elevated Rice to Queen of The May and gotten the WH off the hook.
    Question, why now, why not last week or weeks ago. Hello DNI, what gives?

  • SteveK

    Well it looks like National Security won out over Fox News and the Rush Limbaugh crowd…

  • The_Ohioan

    So, the answer is – Sen. McCain believes CNN but doesn’t believe, and is still suspicious of, this administration and the highest security officials we have? What am I missing? (Or what is he missing?)

    Maybe he can’t hold two thoughts at the same time? There were militants that attacked the mission AND they were reacting to the middle-east-wide protests AND one or more had al Queda contacts AND an al Queda leader wanted everyone to kill Americans on 9/11/2012. OK that’s four thoughts, but if I can understand all four happening at the same time, surely Sen McCain, who is younger than me, can do it.

  • dduck

    Ohio, when a Senator asks you a question, it is wise to tell the truth. You don’t, and you are subject to criticism. If it is secret, then you don’t tell CNN. You want to dance around using JM, fine, doesn’t alter the facts and the timeline of obfuscation, not to mention Rice who was thrown under the bus when no one at DNI answered JM’s charges.
    See if you can hold two thoughts: they knew better and they could have said it was under investigation instead of that film story.
    You may be younger than me but I’ll try not to hold it against you. 🙂

  • The_Ohioan


    Try these two thoughts. It was the film and it was a militant attack. When a Senator doesn’t wait to get all the facts before accusing someone of lying, it’s wise to not give him any more ammunition to use on you.

    Everyone is younger than me. 🙂

  • dduck

    Ohio, it was not the film and it was a terrorist attack and they knew it. So can’t you at least blame Bush, using JM as a shield for misbehavior by DNI and the folks that pushed Rice in the line of fire are the ones you should be after.
    Here’s where Rice, who it has been said had no knowledge of Benghazi, strayed from the talking points on the Meet The Press segment of her media tour, said: “The “evolution” into a violent assault by “extremists”: “that [protest] . . . seems to have been hijacked, let us say, by some individual clusters of extremists who came with heavier weapons . . . and it evolved from there.” This is actually approaching reality if she had said terrorists. On the other four she more closely adhered to the phony talking point, totally blaming the film.

    Have a jelly bean, they are fresh from the bunny.

  • SteveK

    Maybe he can’t hold two thoughts at the same time?

    Well, Mr. McCain was here, in my town, yesterday telling all that the TRILLION dollars spent on the F-35 was a good investment while retiring the $500 BILLION Harriers.


    [Republican] Congress pursues F-35 engine that Defense Secretary Robert Gates doesn’t want

    Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates’s campaign to rein in defense spending was rebuked Thursday by the House, which approved an aircraft engine the Pentagon does not want despite the threat of a presidential veto.


    With the new Congress pledging to cut unnecessary spending and eliminate wasteful earmarks, the extra engine for the multi-service F-35 joint strike fighter should head the list. Past Congresses have funded the extra engine for four consecutive years despite Bush and Obama White Houses, two secretaries of defense, and the three military services that will operate the fighter rejecting it every year as unneeded and wasteful. President Obama threatens to veto the defense bill this year if Congress inserts funds for it.

    Edit to add: Hearing he was coming… I went to the Golf Course.

  • ordinarysparrow

    Meagan must of come home for the holiday?… He was not listening to anyone else…last week she said she was considering leaving the Republican party and becoming an Independent….

  • StockBoyLA

    McCain claims that last week the Senate Select Committee asked the DNI who changed the statement given by Rice. Who knows this is true? Given that McCain has been more interested in attacking Rice, Obama and everyone else, and skipping meetings on this subject, anything McCain says is suspect. There were other senators at that hearing. Have those Senators made similar statements in which the DNI claimed they did not know who made the changes? McCain is good at blaming others when he wants to make a political point. Until other people who were present at that meeting back up McCain’s allegations the the DNI lied in a Senate hearing then McCain’s allegations remain just that… allegations that aren’t true until proven. McCain isn’t under oath when he talks to the press (and we see how loosey goosey he his with the truth). The DNI folks testifying at the hearing were under oath.

  • zusa1

    A spokeswoman for House Intelligence Committee chairman Mike Rogers suggested today that the DNI’s explanation is different that what the committee was told behind closed doors last week.

    “The statement released Monday evening by the DNI’s spokesman regarding how the Intelligence Community’s talking points were changed gives a new explanation that differs significantly from information provided in testimony to the Committee last week,” House Intelligence Committee spokeswoman Susan Phalen told CBS News. “Chairman Rogers looks forward to discussing this new explanation with Director Clapper as soon as possible to understand how the DNI reached this conclusion and why leaders of the Intelligence Community testified late last week that they were unaware of who changed the talking points.

  • StockBoyLA

    Thanks, zusa1.

  • dduck

    Z, good catch, thanks.

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