The Benghazi Truthers and the OLC Hold-Outs

Screen shot 2013-02-14 at 8.41.25 AMDianne Feinstein announced yesterday that the Senate Intelligence Committee would not, as originally planned, vote on John Brennan’s nomination today. No Valentine’s Day love for Brennan I guess.

DiFi cited outstanding questions on Benghazi and the 7 OLC memos the White House has withheld.

That’s important background to this Joshua Hersh story, which makes fun of Richard Burr (who had just made a joke about his relative Aaron Burr killing Alexander Hamilton) grilling Jack Lew about who briefed Obama on Benghazi the night of the attack. As Hersh points out, the White House has released a picture showing Denis McDonough briefing the President that day, which ought to answer Burr’s question.

What Hersh doesn’t say is that Burr specifically asked Lew whether Brennan was in this loop. In the closed session on Tuesday, apparently, Brennan said he wasn’t. This comes on top of the White House withholding — at least as of last Thursday — Presidential Daily Briefs and some emails about the response to Benghazi as it unfolded.

Now, Lew’s role in Benghazi briefings really won’t affect his job as Treasury Secretary. But Brennan’s role might, particularly if the Murdoch boosted eBook alleging he was running ops in Libya out of the White House is true (I’m not saying it is).

In any case, the persistence of the Benghazi truthers has introduced an interesting dynamic I didn’t expect. Of the Republicans on the Senate Intelligence Committee, only Susan Collins and possibly Tom Coburn are not full-on Benghazi truthers (and James Inhofe, who gets a vote if he wants one as Armed Services Committee Ranking member, could add another truther vote).

But Collins is part of the other group — along with at least Ron Wyden and Mark Udall — holding up Brennan’s nomination, those demanding the 7 OLC memos on targeted killing the White House has thus far refused to turn over to the Committee purportedly overseeing these killings. That puts the vote somewhere in the vicinity of 9 votes holding out for something from the White House, 6 votes ready to vote Brennan’s nomination forward.

So who will the White House cede to? The Benghazi truthers, or the OLC holdouts? And is what is in the material the White House has thus far withheld enough for these groups to vote against Brennan?

Note, there’s always the possibility these groups will converge. The public record supports the conclusion that Libyan militants in Derna claimed to have been struck or at least surveilled by a drone. Those militants have ties, at least, to the militants who carried out the attack on the Benghazi post, and the public record also supports the claim the militants were avenging that drone surveillance or strike.  If that drone was approved by an unknown memo authorizing continued strikes in Libya, it would be something that both the Benghazi truthers and the OLC holdouts would be interested in.

Tweet about this on Twitter15Share on Reddit0Share on Facebook1Google+2Email to someone

8 Responses to The Benghazi Truthers and the OLC Hold-Outs

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8

Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz @yeselson @reftpt @StephanieKelton Still, pretty stark then to now.
2mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @reftpt: I've seen this before but I can never get over it. MT @StephanieKelton: #LaborDay poster from 1956. http://t.co/rFJ8LH9147
4mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @drfarls But ... academics. Aren't rules socialist there? (And before I realized today was Sun, was gonna say no one takes Mon classes)
9mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @fmanjoo Also never seen people saying "Oh well, JP Morgan Chase shouldn't have any responsibility to secure online stuff" @steveglista
10mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @drfarls Surely they can't have classes scheduled for the day after labor day?
13mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @mmasnick There's a VIrgin joke here but I'll spare you. @VirginAmerica
15mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel RT @sarahjeong: @darth @strngwys if technology isn't *reasonably* creep-proof, someone fucked up.
20mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @fedbooks Better D than Richard Sherman? Doubt it. Better than last year? Yes.
21mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @memefan2000 Sure. Great ads. But he was also the first for whom it was a kiss of death for his day job.
24mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Ut oh. Richard Sherman does the Campbell's Soup ad that is generally a kiss of death for the season.
25mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV I'm gonna need more popcorn to get through the second half of this game.
31mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV Heh. #GoACC They still have the worst officiating in college football. Two major blown calls in a row.
58mreplyretweetfavorite
February 2013
S M T W T F S
« Jan   Mar »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
2425262728