AN OPENING FOR MITT? – AT 10:33 A.M. ET: At this stage of a presidential race the campaigns do a great deal of private polling to see what works and what doesn't. The Romney campaign is starting to hit the Libya issue hard. I get the feeling their private polls show it's starting to resonate as a matter of trust. From WaPo:
Republicans escalated their charges against the Obama administration for alleged failures in handling last month’s Libya attack, thrusting the death of the U.S. ambassador there into the center of the presidential campaign Friday.
Mitt Romney accused his rival of “doubling down on denial” about the true origins of the Sept. 11 siege in Benghazi, which senior Obama officials initially said appeared to be an outgrowth of anti-American protests, not terrorism. Whether the administration has truthfully disclosed what it knew about the perpetrators of the attacks became a flash point in Thursday night’s debate, when Vice President Biden blamed the administration’s shifting explanations on U.S. intelligence agencies.
“There were more questions that came out last night because the vice president directly contradicted the testimony of State Department officials,” Romney told supporters Friday at a campaign event in Richmond. “American citizens have a right to know just what’s going on.”
Earlier in the week, State Department officials had said that they had not received reports of protests outside the compound before the killings. But Biden said the explanation that the attacks grew from a protest — rather than from terrorists determined to hit the consulate — persisted “because that’s exactly what we were told” by intelligence officials.
After trying for weeks to portray the deaths in Benghazi as part of a larger failure of Obama’s foreign policy, Republicans now sense their first real opening on national security, an area that has long been considered one of the president’s strengths. It was an unexpected twist that the administration seemed to grow more vulnerable following the debate between Biden, a veteran of global diplomacy and the former chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Ryan, a relative novice whose expertise is the domestic budget.
COMMENT: Incidentally, an Obama surrogate, the way-out-left African-American congresswoman from Maryland, Donna Edwards, said yesterday that Americans aren't interested in Benghazi, they're interested in bin Laden. That is a breathtaking, gratuitous insult, and Romney should pick it up and use it. Four Americans were murdered in the Benghazi attack, including our ambassador and two Navy SEAL's. Apparently, Edwards believes Americans think it's just a big yawn.
Do you get the sense that the Obamans realize they're slipping? Their true nature is starting to come out.
October 13, 2012