CNN’s Jake Tapper might have asked the most incisive and insightful question of the 2016 president campaign.
Over the weekend on “State of the Union,” Tapper asked former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush the following question: “Obviously Al Qaeda was responsible for the terrorist attack of 9/11, but how do you respond to critics who ask, if your brother and his administration bear no responsibility at all, how do you then make the jump that President Obama and Secretary Clinton are responsible for what happened at Benghazi?”
Gov. Bush answered this way: “Well I — the question on Benghazi which, is hopefully we’ll now finally get the truth to, is was the place secure? They had a responsibility, the Department of State, to have proper security. There were calls for security, it looks like they didn’t get it. And how was the response in the aftermath of the attack, was there a chance that these four American lives could have been saved? That’s what the investigation is about, it’s not a political issue. It’s not about the broad policy issue, is were we doing the job of protecting our embassies and our consulates and during the period, those hours after the attack started, could they have been saved?”
Did you follow the former governor’s answer? I had trouble getting the connection.
Bush once was thought to be the favorite for the Republican presidential nomination next year. He’s no longer the front runner, based in part on the stumble-bum answers he’s given to questions regarding whether President Bush — Jeb’s big brother — was responsible for the 9/11 attacks.
Gov. Bush said his brother “kept us safe” during his presidency. Hmmm. The loved ones of the 3,000 or so Americans who died on that terrible day might disagree with that view.
The attack occurred nine months into Bush’s presidency. He had been briefed by national security advisers about the threat that al-Qaeda posed. He was warned in advance about the possibility of an attack. The massive intelligence apparatus that we employed did not do its job in protecting the nation.
Is that the president’s responsibility? Well, gosh, it seems that the commander in chief ought to be held accountable. However, Gov. Bush chooses to avoid holding his brother accountable for that breakdown.
As for Tapper’s question, it still requires some clarity in the answer.
If George W. Bush doesn’t deserve blame for the tragedy that befell us on 9/11, how can Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama be held responsible for the Benghazi attack that occurred 11 years later to the day?
Is there a double-standard being applied?