Taking responsibility for the Benghazi tragedy, she drives her enemies to new heights of psycho-sexual rage
On the same day the right reached new paroxysms of Obama-loathing, thanks to a lurid and anonymously sourced Daily Mail story claiming Hillary Clinton would get even with President Obama for being made a scapegoat in the Benghazi tragedy, Hillary Clinton herself took responsibility for the Benghazi tragedy in a somber, dignified interview with CNN.
“I take responsibility,” she said plainly. “I’m in charge of the State Department’s 60,000-plus people all over the world (at) 275 posts. The president and the vice president wouldn’t be knowledgeable about specific decisions that are made by security professionals. They’re the ones who weigh all of the threats and the risks and the needs and make a considered decision.” So much for her gunning for Obama and U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice as revenge for the White House throwing her under the bus.
It turns out Clinton had already told the Wall Street Journal that she took responsibility for the security problems exposed in the attack almost a week ago – but the paper declined to share that information with the world, saving it instead for a forthcoming profile. Proving that was terrible news judgment, if not a deliberate effort to withhold information that might undermine the right-wing story line that Obama and Joe Biden were scapegoating Clinton, the WSJ published the remarks last night, after CNN’s interview ran.
“I take responsibility,” Clinton told the Journal’s Monica Langley. “I’m the Secretary of State with 60,000-plus employees around the world. This is like a big family … It’s painful, absolutely painful.”
As clear as Clinton’s statements were, the right immediately used them to bash Obama. Fox’s Steve Doocy claimed Clinton was “falling on her sword for the administration,” while Laura Ingraham insisted she jumped “on the grenade the day before the debate.” CNN contributor Erick Erickson wrote on his RedState blog: “Doesn’t the buck stop with Barack Obama?”
But the award for most unhinged reaction goes to the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, who took to Twitter to unleash a psycho-sexual tirade against Clinton, Obama and even the former President Clinton. “First Bill humiliates her and now Obama does.. Hillary no feminist, more like doormat,” Rubin wrote. She went on: “yeah once you take your Yale law degree and go to Arkansas you basically are putting your career in the hands of others.” When Obama adviser David Axelrod tweeted in reply: “Sick. Mitt mouthpiece jumps shark,” Rubin shot back: “so is Obama going to hide behind her skirt Tuesday night? Why would the president let Hillary end her career in disgrace?”
It’s been clear for a while that the Clintons and the Obamas drive the right to surreal heights of psycho-sexual anxiety. They can’t decide whether, with her Benghazi statement, Clinton is somehow emasculating Obama by taking responsibility that should be his, or being abused by him. First Rubin has him “humiliating” Clinton and then “hiding behind her skirt.” Which is it? They can’t appraise our first black president and his female former rival in anything other than the most degrading gender stereotypes. Axelrod is right: It’s sick.
Funny, though, there’s been no mention of Toby Hernden’s Daily Mail “scoop” about Clinton’s rage over being made a “scapegoat” by Obama and Biden, and her determination to throw the blame back on the White House. It was the rage of the right-wing blogosphere on Monday; on Tuesday, it was like it never happened. New talking points have been distributed, the old ones shredded. Again, there are legitimate questions about what happened in Benghazi, but we’ll never get to them with this crowd of fabulists, frat boys and angry hacks like Rubin.
Joan Walsh is Salon's editor at large and the author of "What's the Matter With White People: Finding Our Way in the Next America." More Joan Walsh.
More Related Stories
- Oklahoma senator wants to offset tornado aid with other cuts
- Former IRS commissioner to testify on Capitol Hill
- Aloof, shifty Obama: Nixon times ten thousand!
- Anyone regret slashing National Weather Service budget now?
- Limbaugh: No one willing to impeach the first black president
- Top White House aides knew about IRS probe but didn't tell Obama
- Gohmert: IRS would've "probably shot the Boston Tea Party participants"
- Oregon senator proposes appeal to Monsanto Protection Act
- Supreme Court to rule on prayer at government meetings
- Beltway scandal machine breaks, knows nothing about America
- Top GOP official: "Sometimes our party does not value" women "as much"
- Colorado Dems fight back against GOP's Voter ID measures
- Watchdogs: ABC "in danger of losing a lot of credibility" on Benghazi saga
- Father of gay high school student arrested for dating classmate speaks out
- IRS meltdown was long overdue
- Can a liberal wonk save the Senate?
- Arkansas treasurer charged with extortion
- Corporate greed is poisoning America -- literally
- The new geography of poverty
- Barack Obama: Incidental black man?
- Obama to all-male university graduates: Be the best husband to "your boyfriend or partner"
Featured Slide Shows
The week in 10 picsclose X
- 1 of 11
Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
Credit: AP/LM Otero
Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
Credit: AP/Matt Rourke
A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
Credit: AP/Jenny Aicher
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
Credit: AP/Molly Riley
Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite
Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
Credit: AP/Carolyn Kaster
O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
Credit: AP/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Jeff Scheid
Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
Credit: AP/NASA/Chris Hadfield
When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
Credit: AP/Jacquelyn Martin
A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
Credit: AP/The Duluth News-Tribune/Clint Austin
Recent Slide Shows
- 1 of 11