The Cable

Every discussion about Hillary Clinton in five hours of Benghazi hearings

Everyone had a reason to summon the name "Hillary Clinton" at Wednesday’s hearing on Benghazi. For Republicans, it was a chance to chink the armor of the overwhelming favorite for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. For Democrats, it was a chance to suck up to the overwhelming favorite for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. For ...

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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee about the September 11 attacks against the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, on Capitol Hill January 23, 2013 in Washington, DC. Lawmakers questioned Clinton about the security failures that led to the death of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

Everyone had a reason to summon the name "Hillary Clinton" at Wednesday’s hearing on Benghazi. For Republicans, it was a chance to chink the armor of the overwhelming favorite for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. For Democrats, it was a chance to suck up to the overwhelming favorite for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. For everyone else, it just made sense to reference the former secretary of state because it was on her watch that the Benghazi fiasco transpired.

In sum, The Cable counts 32 times Clinton was discussed during the nearly five hours of testimony. Methodologically speaking, we treated instances in which her name was invoked repeatedly as one "discussion" because we found it exasperating to collect each and every fleeting "Hillary" for five hours. What you’ll find is a unique and interesting Hillary-centric snapshot of the hearing. Here’s a teeny-tiny summary of every Hillary-related discussion:

  • GOP Rep. Darrell Issa: Hillary Clinton promised to give us answers on Benghazi but she didn’t.
  • Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings: Republicans wrongly-accused Hillary Clinton of lying to Congress
  • Deputy Chief of Mission in Libya Gregory Hicks: Hillary Clinton phoned me the night of the attacks on Benghazi
  • GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy: Hillary Clinton received an important e-mail on Benghazi
  • Democratic Rep. Carolyn Maloney: Hillary Clinton has been unfairly attacked by Republicans
  • Democratic Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton: I think Mark Thompson might be spreading lies about Hillary Clinton
  • Former Marine and State Department official Mark Thompson: I wouldn’t say I’ve been spreading lies about Hillary Clinton
  • GOP Rep. James Lankford: The only person with the authority to waive security requirements for high-risk locations is Hillary Clinton
  • GOP Rep. Jim Jordan: Someone e-mailed something important to someone who works closely with Hillary Clinton
  • GOP Rep. Tim Walberg: Did Hillary Clinton ever mention anything about a protest when she called you at 2 a.m.?
  • Hicks: Hillary Clinton never mentioned anything about a protest when she called me at 2 a.m.
  • Diplomatic security officer Eric Nordstrom: We need a better way of informing Hillary Clinton about things
  • GOP Rep. Paul Gosar: I’m going to introduce that clip of Hillary Clinton saying "What difference does it make?"
  • Hicks: Well, if Hillary Clinton were to ask me, I’d say it did make a big difference
  • GOP Rep. Patrick Meehan: Hillary Clinton had to have signed this important thing, right?
  • Nordstram: Yes: Hillary Clinton had to have signed that important thing.
  • GOP Rep. Scott Eugene DesJarlais: If you listen to Democrats, they agree with Hillary Clinton’s sentiment: "What difference does it make?"
  • DesJarlais: Didn’t Hillary Clinton tell you you did a good job?
  • Hicks: Yes, Hillary Clinton did say that.
  • GOP Rep. Thomas Massie: Did Hillary Clinton ever ask you what resources you might need?
  • Hicks: Yes, Hillary Clinton did ask that
  • GOP Rep. Doug Collins: Would you expect Hillary Clinton to be briefed on that important thing?
  • Nordstrom: Yes, I would expect Hillary Clinton to be briefed on that important thing.
  • Issa: Did Hillary Clinton ask you what caused the Benghazi attack?
  • Hicks: No, but I told her about the cause of the attack that I read on Twitter.
  • Jordan: I’m going to imply that Cheryl Mills speaks for Hillary Clinton
  • Cummings: Hillary Clinton convened a group to review thousands of documents in the aftermath of Benghazi
  • GOP Rep. Jason Chaffetz: Did Hillary Clinton make the security decisions in Benghazi?
  • Jordan: Did Hillary Clinton deny you the troops you requested?
  • Nordstrom: Yes, Hillary Clinton did
  • Gowdy: Is it true that Hillary Clinton alone is able to authorize security specifications?
  • Nordstrom: Kind of. It depends

 

Alicia Wittmeyer, Colin Daileda, and Elizabeth Ralph contributed amazingly to this blog post

John Hudson is a senior reporter at Foreign Policy, where he covers diplomacy and national security issues in Washington. He has reported from several geopolitical hotspots, including Ukraine, Pakistan, Malaysia, China, and Georgia. Prior to joining FP, John covered politics and global affairs for the Atlantic magazine’s news blog, the Atlantic Wire. In 2008, he covered the August war between Russia and Georgia from Tbilisi and the breakaway region of Abkhazia. He has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, BBC, C-SPAN, Fox News radio, Al Jazeera, and other broadcast outlets. He has been with the magazine since 2013. @john_hudson

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