Newly released emails related to the 2012 Benghazi attacks point to an "obvious cover-up," and Congress needs to appoint a select committee to investigate the issue in light of White House involvement in crafting a false narrative about the attack, Sen. John McCain said.
"It is not only now the needless and tragic deaths of four Americans, but it is an obvious cover-up by the White House," the Arizona Republican told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" Thursday.
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McCain said lawmakers who questioned the White House narrative about the attacks in Libya have been "calling for a long time for a select committee of both houses that can get to the bottom of this."
After the Sept. 11, 2012, attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, then-U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice made appearances on Sunday talk shows to explain the incident. She said the attack was based on a spontaneous demonstration in response to a YouTube video.
The explanation by the White House was fueled by an effort to re-elect President Barack Obama, McCain said. Rice's statements were "not based on any fact," the senator said.
Emails obtained by government watchdog group Judicial Watch on Tuesday indicated White House officials were involved in creating the talking points for Rice to portray the attack as "rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy."
The emails were "further authentication that this was all a political exercise," McCain said.
"This was all in line with a re-election campaign, rather than the facts surrounding the tragic deaths of four brave Americans. That's what is outrageous about this," he said.
The deaths included Ambassador Christopher Stevens.
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