Arkansas Republican Rep. Tom Cotton savaged Democrats Thursday during a debate over the 2012 Benghazi attack, blasting their "fake outrage" over GOP fundraising efforts linked to the tragedy.
Barely hiding his disgust, Cotton strode to the podium on the House floor minutes before a vote to convene a select committee to investigate the White House's handing of the attack in Libya and its aftermath.
Democrats and some Republicans have criticized a National Republican Congressional Committee email referencing an alleged White House cover-up, and seeking political donations.
But Cotton, a former Army vet with combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan, jumped all over lawmakers across the aisle, saying they "express great outrage at politicizing this manner," fuming: "When I was leading troops in Iraq in 2006 — men and women who were being shot at and blown up by al-Qaida — where was the outrage as they fundraised endlessly off the Iraq War?"
The stunning blast was aired on C-Span.
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"Where was the outrage when they said that soldiers were war criminals?" he continued. "Where was the outrage when they said the war was lost? Where was the outrage when they said that only high school dropouts join the army?"
"Forgive me if I don’t join my Democratic colleagues in their fake outrage," Cotton added.
Cotton also attacked President Barack Obama as a failed leader who doesn't match up to a rank-and-file soldier, accusing the commander in chief of failing "to stay in the situation room to supervise the execution of his orders" on the night of Sept. 11, 2012.
"We expect more of lieutenants in the army than our president gave us that night," Cotton said.
"Four Americans lost their lives that night in Benghazi," Cotton, who is running for the Senate against incumbent Democrat Mark Pryor in November, added. "They deserve justice and the American people deserve the truth. One other lesson I learned in the Army is we leave no man behind.
"We will not leave these four men behind."
Shortly afterwards, the bitterly divided House voted 232-186
to establish the panel that Speaker John Boehner insisted would answer questions remaining from the Benghazi attack.
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