House committee investigates security failures in Benghazi
Rep. Patrick Meehan weighs in
- Duration 6:11
- Date Oct 14, 2012
Rep. Patrick Meehan weighs in
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This will -- a cart officials and -- It astonishing testimony before congress that they needed more security ask the state department for -- and were denied.
This is aired Nordstrom.
Testify about a phone call that he had with a regional director.
I asked for twelve agents.
His response to that was you're asking for the sun moon and the stars.
Right response to him his name's Jim -- -- Jim you know what makes most frustrating about this assignment is not the hardships.
Not the gunfire not the threats it's -- and fighting against the people.
And personnel who were supposed to be supporting me and I added it by saying for me -- holly Barnett is on the inside of the building.
Well Pennsylvania congressman and former federal prosecutor Patrick Meehan.
Is only oversight committee he was one of those asking questions at that hearing and joins us now congressman thanks for being with us today.
-- in those hearings I know that you were there is a congressman.
But you've had years of distinguished.
-- service record.
As a federal prosecutor you're used to interrogate people.
What is your assessment of how high up this whole.
Information chain goes.
Well and that's very high because the highest levels of the State Department what you have -- the unusual circumstance.
In which you have strong misrepresentations.
On both sides of an incidence.
On the front end whether or not they were aware it main justice about the dire situation.
And on safety and and Libya and and then Gaza in particular and that there was.
Clear and unconscious verdict testimony that not only -- that they are aware of his reports for going up and they were being told effectively to stifle that.
Don't request for more security because you're not cutting yet.
And of course on the back -- the gross misrepresentations.
In the aftermath about what was actually happening.
And as people know the suggestion that it was.
Initiated by -- video.
When in fact there was not even a demonstration.
Was factually determined.
In front of the -- so.
Concerns me -- the lack of accountability.
What you're beginning to see his finger pointing has benefits you know somebody else's responsibility.
And the failure for those in Washington to listen to those on the ground.
Who really know what's going on and being responsive to their clues instead of telling them what's going on from Washington.
It's kind of a paradigm for a lot of other things going on our government today.
-- -- -- -- Has said that neither he nor the president knew anything about the intelligence reports indicating that there were pressed request for more security.
Some of us find that hard to believe maybe they didn't read the security briefings because we know they didn't attend it about 40% of the meetings.
But this suggestion is that may be other people in the administration downstream.
Primarily people of the intelligence community and including secretary of state Hillary Clinton did know.
That she's responsible for not passing and off.
But my question is what do you plan to bring -- the secretary of state before the committee.
But her under oath and ask what did she know and when did she know.
Well there's certainly -- clear interest in getting to exactly that point because what you're seeing is the intelligence community now being laid out to dry.
As if somehow they are the ones who are responsible when in fact there was clear information that at least would have had a prudent person.
-- and second guess that whether we would be able to rely exclusively on the fact that this was driven by -- -- By a video so the idea that they could still be five days later.
Having a UN ambassador out on the national TV programs claiming the video was the motivating factor.
When when long before that there was strong indications and the conclusions as you heard the testimony that day.
From a chief person at the State Department who said within 24 hours it was his conclusion that it was a terrorist dominated issue.
So who's talking to the State Department.
And the real.
Lack of accountability as if somehow you can set up in this ivory tower have no responsibility for what goes on below you.
And the misrepresentation.
Which I consider to be a gross misrepresentation.
By the vice president that they didn't know anything about request again.
Is sort of a few.
Close your ears that somehow you're not accountable I just don't buy.
Assuming that the president and the vice president did not know about the security.
Request because -- there there consulates all over the world their embassies all over the world understand it would be.
Thousands literally of reports of my bubble up.
But after the event.
It seems inconceivable.
That the president of the United States was unaware.
Of the facts that were obvious to the intelligence community.
How could I having not known and if he didn't know who kept that information from him.
A governor that is the duty of inquiry you -- -- government you understand and I think particularly where there's notice.
And now you should be getting real time reports from that give accurate and actual information.
This is the same paradigm we're seeing in fast and furious where the response is well we didn't know anything about it and you can't.
Be able to.
Be held unaccountable because you choose not to listen to those who have information to bring to you.
And I'm being kind when I say choose not to listen I think there is a duty of inquiry there's a duty of responsibility.
When something that's significant.
That had to be one of the most important things the federal government was responding to at that moment.
And for them to say that they are aware of the circumstances.
Suggest one of two things either incompetence.
Congressman I appreciate your being here and I appreciate your service on the committee thank you very much for joining us today --