Hey, if Susan Rice qualifies for a big promotion, why not Victoria Nuland? She's the State Department spokeswoman at the center of the firestorm over the administration's Benghazi talking points -- and if the president has his way, she'll be movin' on up to Assistant Secretary of State:
The State Department spokeswoman who earlier this month found herself in the middle of the controversy surrounding key revisions to the Benghazi talking points appears to be in line for a promotion. The White House announced Thursday that President Barack Obama intends to nominate Victoria Nuland as assistant secretary for European and Eurasian affairs, a position that requires Senate confirmation...Nuland, who has served as the State Department spokesperson from 2011 until earlier this spring, came under fire from Obama administration critics last week after leaked e-mails revealed she raised concerns with the CIA-prepared talking points on the deadly terror attack last September 11. Specifically, Nuland asked that references to al Qaeda and previous CIA warnings about threats posed to U.S. diplomats in Libya be scrubbed from the document that was used by U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice on news talk shows to explain the administration's understanding of events in Libya.
Those confirmation hearings could get testy. Nuland's contributions to the now-infamous talking points email chain provide the closest thing to smoking-gun evidence of a cover up. She demanded that (accurate) assessments of terrorist involvement be scrubbed, along with references to (accurate) intelligence warnings about the deteriorating security situation in Benghazi leading up to the attack . Here's how ABC News described her insistence on misleading edits a few weeks ago:
In one email, previously reported by ABC News, Nuland said that including the CIA warnings "could be used by Members [of Congress] to beat the State Department for not paying attention to Agency warnings so why do we want to feed that? Concerned …" After some changes were made, Nuland was still not satisfied. "These [changes] don't resolve all my issues or those of my building leadership," Nuland wrote.
These two quotes alone demonstrate how Nuland was primarily concerned with denying Congress (accurate) ammunition to ask why State Department leadership had been derelict and negligent in advance of the deadly terrorist attacks. "Why do we want to feed that?" she asked, apparently unconcerned with, you know, the truth. She also specified that early rounds of alterations to the talking points were insufficiently bowdlerized, which was unacceptable to both her and her "building leadership." To whom might she have been referring, I wonder? Now, Obama would like to elevate Nuland to be among that same building leadership. Loyal soldiers must be rewarded for protecting the castle, after all. This move extends another middle finger to House investigators and the families of the Benghazi dead. The message is clear: The president could not care less about what other people think about his administration's actions. Indeed, it's such a non-scandal to the White House that they're conspicuously promoting its key players. The arrogance and "you can't touch me" attitude speaks for itself. This administration is out of control.
Forget promotions, not a single person has been fired over the lethal Benghazi fiasco. The handful of State Department officials who've been "disciplined" are still drawing paychecks, including the top "scapegoat," who was going to be reassigned to a new job as soon as the scandal "blew over." Elsewhere on the accountability score card, at least five Benghazi attackers have been identified and located by the US government. None of them have been detained, however, because the administration is trying to build a legal case against them that could hold up in a civilian American courtroom. Madness. Meanwhile, the Congressional investigation is far from over. The American people are largely supportive of Republicans' efforts to get to the bottom of the issue, which a majority calls "very important." As the Washington Post puts it, based on their polling, "it’s not just Republicans up in arms about Benghazi. That’s a problem for President Obama." I'll leave you with this headline from BuzzFeed:
House Democrats Dismiss Existence Of Obama Scandals
Apparently some of them didn't get the memo.