McCain: Carney Destroys His Reputation With Benghazi Spin

Tuesday, 06 May 2014 11:24 AM

By Melanie Batley

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White House Press Secretary Jay Carney has destroyed his reputation with comments he has made about the Benghazi terrorist attacks, Sen. John McCain said in a Fox News interview.

Carney has denied that official talking points given in 2012 to then-U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, which blamed a spontaneous protest for the Benghazi violence, were not exclusively designed to address the incident.

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In the Fox interview Monday night, McCain, an Arizona Republican, expressed disbelief that during a heated exchange with ABC News' Jon Karl, Carney insisted that talking points outlined in an email by White House Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes were also designed to address region-wide protests and not just Benghazi.

"I have never seen anything like after 19 months the emails concerning their priorities and the president's spokesperson saying that it had nothing to do with Benghazi. Now that has reached a new point," McCain told Greta Van Susteren of Fox News, acknowledging he was talking about Carney.

Story continues below video.


"You know Jay Carney, I knew him for years. I knew him as a pretty straightforward journalist. He has destroyed his own reputation by that statement that what clearly was the talking points, which had nothing to do but Benghazi, saying it had nothing to do with Benghazi. That, to me, is an all-time low for a presidential spokesperson."

In the immediate aftermath of the attack, Rice told the media that the attack was caused by a spontaneous protest in reaction to a YouTube video. Evidence has since emerged that senior defense officials informed the administration on the night of the event that the assault was a terrorist attack.

The email by Rhodes was obtained by the government watchdog Judicial Watch, and advised Rice "to underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy."

Urgent: Who Is Your Choice for the GOP's 2016 Nominee?

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