Update: Maybe Obama thinks Harry Truman said “The Buick Stops here”? No?
Powerline also makes the same call we do below for Romney (Candy?) to slap Obama with a certain question tonight:
“But then came a substantive question, to which Obama had no answer:
POLITICO: Is Hillary to blame for Benghazi?
OBAMA: (Silence. Kept walking.)
It is quite remarkable to watch: [video at link]
It’s a tough question. What is the right answer? Yes? No? I suspect that one more item was added to Obama’s debate preparation.”
As we cross our fingers let’s reiterate a point we made below: If Romney “defends” Hillary and tell Obama to “man up” (Romney campaign is already using “man up”) he might do himself a world of good with women voters. We call it the “reverse Rick Lazio.
A few more hours to go for the 97 lb. weakling to face off against Mitt Romney. We’ll be commenting and having all sorts of fun during the debate.
Tonight is presidential debate night. Barack Obama is worried. Make that terrified. Just look at the numbers: Romney hits 50%, leads by 4 in PPP/Daily Kos national poll. A DailyKooks poll!
At the first debate Barack Obama proved yet again he is neither qualified nor ready to be president. Now Obama needs a blowout undisputed debate victory to stop the oceanic flow of voters away from him to Mitt Romney. It’s likely Mitt Romney will not be so generous as to give drowning Obama the air hose he needs.
Other than yet more flowery words and a grin Obama does not have much going for him tonight. American voters hate Obamacare and his scam of close to a trillion dollars on a failed “stimulus”. In addition to the domestic house of horrors Obama now has to deal with what we term the “Libya Fibya”.
At the debate for the vice president nominees Joe Biden pled the Sergeant Schultz defense, “I know nothing.” That ploy has not been successful and the Obama stonewall of denials remains under siege.
Now, fearful of what Mitt Romney will do to him at tonight’s debate, Barack Obama has ordered more national security leaks. The latest national security leak from the White House is that Barack Obama will soon order an attack on someone[s] in Libya. The killers of Ambassador Stevens could not be happier now that Barack Obama, for personal political gain, has effectively warned them to disperse and hide until he is more flexible after the election.
The national security leaks from the White House are an attempt to block the onslaught from Mitt Romney tonight on the Libya Fibya. Obama will try to deflect by either announcing an attack or acting like a man and making threats that he will kill again just like he killed Bin Laden. But that’s not going to work now. Hillary Clinton has opened up new lines of attack for Mitt Romney.
Last night Hillary Clinton’s “responsibility gene” kicked in. As the official in charge of the State Department the Secretary of State said the obvious – she is responsible for what happens at the State Department.
Barack Obama is passing the buck. Joe Biden does not even know what the buck looks like. And considering the many questions about whether the American facilities in Benghazi were a C.I.A. cover operation not just the run of the mill “spies at the embassy” has anyone seen General Petraeus – the man in charge of the C.I.A.? No, only Hillary Clinton is on the job.
And what a job! Hillary Clinton has now, whether intentionally or not, foolishly or not, made sure that the Benghazi disasters will be a topic at tonight’s Hofstra Halloween Horror Debate. Big Media has tried to block investigation and stories about Benghazi in order to protect Barack Obama. Now, Hillary Clinton has broken this story wide open and given on a silver platter a smorgasbord of opportunities to Mitt Romney.
The opportunity for Romney is not just in driving this story into the headlines of even the Benghazi adverse New York Times. Mitt Romney can now ask Barack Obama “Where does the Buck stop, Obama? Where? With the people you appoint or with you?”
The variations on that question are many. Romney should ask Obama, face to face, the question that was asked of David Axelrod on Sunday. Axelrod on Fox News would not answer the questions that Mitt Romney can ask Barack “where were you and what did you do?:
“After David Axelrod’s repeated assurances this morning on Fox News Sunday that “there isn’t anybody on this planet” who feels a greater sense of responsibility for our diplomats than this President, Chris Wallace asked how soon after the Benghazi attacks the President actually met with his national security team.
Wallace followed up on Axelrod’s non-answer by asking whether the President managed to squeeze in a meeting with the National Security Council before jetting off to Las Vegas for a campaign rally. Given Axelrod’s inability to produce a straightforward answer to the questions, it’s pretty clear the answer is “no.”
At the debate Mitt Romney can be quite the gallant, protective of frail and sweet Hillary Clinton, while at the same time appealing to women voters. Think of it as reverse Rick Lazio.
Expose Barack Obama as the “blame the staff, throw Hillary Clinton under the bus” weakling that he is. Oh right. This also makes Barack Obama be seen as the fey twit that he is. The opportunities for Mitt Romney multiply the more thought is applied.
Jennifer Rubin at the Washington Post has given some thought to questions that need to be asked and answered before the election:
“Where is CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus? He seems to be the missing man in the unfolding Benghazi debacle. It is his agency, among others, which is being fingered by the White House for getting the Libya attack wrong. However, we know that within a very short time after the murder of our ambassador (an extraordinary occurrence) and others, our intelligence community did have the story straight: This was an organized al-Qaeda attack. [snip]
The questions are multiplying:”
Among the questions asked by Rubin are if and when did Hillary find out about security requests for Benghazi, the usual Susan Rice questions, plus who briefed Rice before she lied on national television? When was it determined that Benghazi was a terrorist attack and what was done thereafter? Why all the lies about that video? Was there any sort of review of Obama’s U.N. speech – lies spewed internationally on September 25 blaming a video? Did Hillary hater Tom Donilon inform Obama about the attack and just what did Donilon say? Did Petraeus tell anyone to stop lying/blaming the video and call it a terrorist attack?
Mitt Romney can take note of all these questions which boil down to the simple “What did Barack Obama know and when did he know it – and what did he do about it?”
Our repeated calls for an investigation with results to be disclosed before Election Day 2012, with testimony from Hillary Clinton and everyone else involved or pretending they are not involved, are needed now more than ever.
After Hillary Clinton’s interviews last night we were shocked. We were not shocked at all about what Hillary Clinton said. What shocked us is what Republicans/conservatives said and wrote.
Perhaps we should not have been shocked. Republicans/conservatives were doing exactly what we have recommended to them for a long time. Repeatedly our suggestions and “memes” have made their way into the bloodstream of political discourse and political campaigns. Our call for “We can’t afford Barack Obama” ads from the Romney campaign have been met with “We can’t afford Barack Obama” ads from the Romney campaign. Not bad for a Big Pink website derided today as “deadenders” by Buzzfeed.
For the longest time we have advised Republicans/conservatives to think of Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton as opportunities to attack Barack Obama.
For the longest time we have advised Republicans/conservatives to put “I” over “E”, not the losing “E” over “I”. Last night that is exactly what they did.
Instead of emotionally responding with ancient hatred against the Clintons, Republicans/conservatives got very smart. Many expected Republicans/conservatives to go full out stupid and demand Hillary Clinton’s resignation. Instead intelligence prevailed over emotion. Republicans/conservatives came as close as they genetically could to the defense of Hillary Clinton!
Perhaps Republicans/conservatives realized that a call for resignation or fight with one of the most popular
politicians officials, generally respected as a hard worker, would be another losing battle in a long history of losing battles against Hillary and Bill Clinton. Perhaps fear that American voters would perceived Hillary Clinton was a “victim” and rally to her was/is the motivating factor. Perhaps, but we don’t think so.
We think that what led to the Republican/conservative response was not fear, but rather intelligence. In short Republicans/conservatives decided to stay focused on the prize.
The “prize” is the election a few short weeks away and the defeat of Barack Obama. A fight with Hillary Clinton would be a distraction and a missed opportunity to win the election.
Consider Senator Lindsay Graham. Early yesterday Graham sent Obama a letter asking Obama whether he knew of the previous attacks on the Benghazi compound and if so what Obama did about it?
Years ago Representative Lindsay Graham was an impeachment manager against Bill Clinton. Did now Senator Graham attack Hillary Clinton and demand her immediate resignation? No. Senator Graham’s response to the Lima statement by Hillary remained focused on Barack Obama:
“Her remarks drew a quick response from three Republicans on the Senate Armed Services Committee, including ranking member John McCain.
Clinton’s statement of responsibility was “a laudable gesture, especially when the White House is trying to avoid any responsibility whatsoever,” the Arizona senator said in a joint broadside with Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire. However, they added, “The security of Americans serving our nation everywhere in the world is ultimately the job of the commander-in-chief. The buck stops there.”
Senator Graham and Hillary Clinton know where the buck stops:
“Hillary Clinton to Barack Obama: You don’t get what it takes to be an effective President.
“Government by adviser simply doesn’t work,” charged Clinton, seizing for the second straight day on Obama’s pledge to be a President who inspires and provides a vision for the nation – not one who will make sure “everything’s running on time” in the federal bureaucracy.
“Being President means being both CEO and COO of one of the largest and most complex organizations in the world,” she insisted. [snip]
“I know that we can get on top of this, but it’s going to require strong presidential leadership – it’s going to require a President who knows from day one you have to run a government and manage the economy,” she said. “The buck stops in the Oval Office.”
“Allahpundit last night wondered whether Barack Obama would magnanimously assure people in tonight’s debate that the buck stops at his desk. Frankly, it’s too late for that now. Hillary may or may not have intended to take some heat off of the White House after Joe Biden’s Sergeant Schultz “We knew nothing” declaration at Thursday’s debate, but all she ended up doing is making Obama look tremendously weak by contrast. [snip]
It’s a jaw-dropping display of a leadership vacuum, which Hillary ended up having to fill herself. This is exactly what Hillary warned voters about in 2008. The contrast between her moment of leadership in this crisis and Obama’s lack of leadership since the very beginning of it will not help Obama make the case for another four years of buck-passing at the top, not even when Obama showed leadership on the Nicki Minaj-Mariah Carey feud.”
Lindsay Graham and Ed Morrisey are not alone in putting I over E. Stay focused on Barack Obama and don’t victimize Hillary Clinton. Barack Obama must go and any distraction helps him. Instead, turn the tables. Mitt Romney can do that tonight.
AllahPundit at Republican/conservative HotAir quotes Hillary: I take responsibility for Benghazi
Here’s the real question: Did Obama put Hillary up to this or did she do it on her own initiative to put O on the spot? As I’ve explained, I think this actually helps him by letting him accept symbolic responsibility while continuing to shunt actual responsibility onto State. But maybe I’m wrong. A friend e-mailed me after I wrote this post on Friday scolding me for thinking that Obama might throw Hillary under the bus rather than vice versa. After all, she’d have an easier time running in 2016 against President Romney than she would trying to succeed a two-term Democratic president. (Although, in that case, why did Bill Clinton give a wildly successful speech for O at the convention?) And as I said Friday, there is political peril for O in having Hillary go first on this. Potentially, he’ll look weak and diffident tomorrow night by following her lead, not loyal and magnanimous — and maybe Hillary knew that when she stepped up. Expect Romney to hammer that point, especially given how much he enjoys playing the Clintons off of Obama. What kind of “leader” says “the buck stops here” only after it’s already stopped somewhere else?
Hillary waited to be out of the country to drop this bomb. Now Obama has to answer questions from a position of weakness. And Mitt Romney? – “he enjoys playing the Clintons off of Obama.” Yup.
“Does this take President Obama off the hook? No. First, he appointed Clinton as his Secretary of State, in what was probably his most important personnel decision as president.
Second, Clinton did not, and cannot, take the fall for the false statements by the Obama administration about what happened in Benghazi. The State Department, which was following events there in real time, knew that this was a terrorist attack, not a protest. Yet, days after the attack, the administration mischaracterized it as a protest that spun out of control against a movie. That’s on Obama, not Clinton.“
Wittingly or unwittingly, Hillary Clinton is once again the Republican secret weapon against Barack Obama. After his first brilliant debate performance we are sure that Mitt Romney will deploy the secret weapon.