Monday Morning Politics: Benghazi Emails; IRS Targeting; Obamacare

Monday, May 13, 2013

Press Secretary Jay Carney (AFP/Getty Images)

Last Friday was not the calmest day at the White House, as reporters and Republican lawmakers continued to press on the details of the Benghazi embassy attack. Plus, revelations that the IRS was targeting conservative groupsBen Smith, Buzzfeed editor in chief, talks about the latest from Washington.


Below: The Benghazi Talking Points Email Trail (From ABC News)


Ben Smith

Comments [23]

Gov't obtains wide AP phone records in probe

"The AP delayed reporting the story at the request of government officials who said it would jeopardize national security."

I guess NPR and WNYC already have that delay period built into their reporting and other shows.

May. 13 2013 11:23 PM
scott from soho


Please try and save what little credibility your show still has by reporting news instead of simply blindly supporting this corrupt administration. If you put Bush and Obama side by side, it would be hard to decipher who has done more damage to our nation.

Benghazi - 4 Americans were killed with zero effort to save them. WTF? Who gave the order for help to stand down? Where was Obama during the event? In bed, busy with more important issue? Why did they continue to push the ridiculous video as the fuel for the attack? If I were a reporter trying to inform my listenership, I would get these questions answered.

IRS - Picking political foes for audits. How would you feel if a liberal organization was the target and Bush was president? Who is getting fired for these actions? That is a question for the President and or officials at the IRS.

May. 13 2013 06:29 PM

At last liberals are doing to conservatives what conservatives used to do to us! Go after those conservatives. They are evil. They shouldn't just be hounded by the IRS, they should be rounded up and put in jail. I know, from Brian's tone, he agrees with me. NPR is leading the way to a new world order. It's about time!

May. 13 2013 02:46 PM
amalgam from NYC by day, NJ by night

OH, LORDY, let's just see how the Obama admin. at the highest levels - snicker - pointedly used the IRS bureaucracy to harass "social welfare" groups. Can't wait for Issa to get nowhere on this!

Let's ignore the fact that many of these are skirting the line of legality if not crossing it themselves. The fact that all of these groups are all anti-tax and small-government to anti-government legal to illegal tax avoidance maneuvers should be expected. If the Cincinnati IRS center used illegal means, let the legal process play out.

(Money in politics = quasi-legal [if not sometimes illegal] political bribery...thanks "originalist/strict constructionist" Supreme Court!)

On Benghazi: Besides the alleged, illegal "cover up" for political ends, what was the comparable "crime" that was committed by the State Dept./Clinton/Obama admin. that was committed by the Nixon-assigned Watergate break-in, wiretapping, etc.? Besides, possible and debatable incompetence by the State Dept., what was the illegal action again?

And for the record, I the ink the Obama admin. handled all of this poorly and foolishly, it just isn't illegal...

May. 13 2013 12:41 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights


You need new eyeglasses.

It's DLM. Not DIM.

May. 13 2013 12:39 PM

Were you assigned the name "dim" or were you born with that?

May. 13 2013 12:16 PM

Well dlm, it's pretty clear that the President of the United States and the Secretary of State and probably the entire administration HATED those people caught in the Libyan embassy that day, ESPECIALLY Ambassador Stevens.

Barack Obama wanted them ALL dead.

May. 13 2013 12:11 PM

Riiiiight... gun charges, arson, grand larceny and fraud.

...TOTALLY comparable to smoking weed.


May. 13 2013 12:06 PM

So far everything we have been told about Benghazi is a lie. The press is just now - months after the fact beginning to acknowledge there is a cover-up. Well why? I want to hear why no one was sent to help our people. They managed to hold out for seven hours and yet HELP WAS NOT EVEN IN ROUTE AT THAT POINT. WHY.

May. 13 2013 12:04 PM


Be careful what you wish for.

I know a former "Choom Gang" member who loves to publicly confess to several controlled substance felonies.

May. 13 2013 10:52 AM

Of course, Brian, it depends of what is in the heart of the various bad actors - you can bet that the "bad" actors pictured here are now facing a process that could result in more negative consequences than the niceties of an the obligation to offer an anodyne apology.
If you report only that part of the I.R.S. scandal having to do with the over-selection of conservative or "Tea Party" identified groups, it's easier to avoid the disparate treatment that these groups of citizens were subjected to ("no big deal, we don't like what they stand for").
I wonder when the last I.R.S. audit of WNYC for political activities was performed?
[No, I don't really wonder at all.]

May. 13 2013 10:43 AM

As a convicted criminal, how is it that Darrell Issa is allowed to hold PUBLIC OFFICE???


May. 13 2013 10:42 AM



...and, I'm no Clinton fan!!

May. 13 2013 10:32 AM

Darrell Issa, really?!?!?

This guy is a CRIMINAL!

"Issa has been accused of burning down a building and arrested for carrying a concealed weapon (he paid a fine, got 6 months probation) and stealing a red Maserati (case dismissed)."

"Issa was charged with carrying a concealed weapon; he pled GUILTY to a charge of possession of an unregistered firearm, and was sentenced to six months' probation and a small fine."

May. 13 2013 10:31 AM
fuva from harlemworld

In the 60s, Republicans/Conservatives courted unrepentant ex-Confederates who opposed civil rights for blacks. Their base is now dominated by these base people and their progeny. It continues to reflect in their positions and actions and, hopefully, attempts to mask it with superficial policy adjustments will continue to fail.

May. 13 2013 10:29 AM

Please, MC, you let your glee get way ahead of the facts.

Here's some GOP/Republican misdeeds....Let me know where you think the President and the Democrats come close.

-Nixon convinced South Vietnam to walk out of the '68 Peace Talks
-GOP operatives break in to the Watergate hotel. President covers up the connection and denies it.
-Reagan's campaign dealt with the Iranians to hold American hostages an additional 65 days. (Inauguration Day rather than day after the election.)
-In order to get Iranian co-operation, Reagan Administration sells them arms (illegally) and uses the money to fund an illegal war in El Salvador.
-GOP uses S&L as a piggy-bank gutting the individual savings function
-FL Sec of State eliminates as many as 20,000 valid voters from the 2000 voter rolls. Without that act, GWB is never elected President.
-GWB drops the ball on Clinton anti-terror efforts. 9/11 attack is the result. May have happened anyway but the lack of effort made it easier.
-GWB uses attack by AQ to invade Iraq. Uses any lie he can muster to get us in there.
-Torture becomes an accepted form of intelligence gathering by US.

Got anything on the BHO's - or HRC's for that matter - background that comes close? Whitewater? Spinning the Benghazi so you don't look like you dropped the ball? Not even close.

May. 13 2013 10:28 AM
Amy from Manhattan

But doesn't Mr. Richwein (sp.?) think we *need* people w/low IQs for all those menial jobs?

May. 13 2013 10:27 AM
John A

Don't break the law and targeting won't matter.

May. 13 2013 10:27 AM
fuva from harlemworld

The current level of tolerance for Republican/Conservative baseness will – to future generations – have us looking like those ‘crazies’ who condoned overt racist terror years ago. In fact, they are us.

May. 13 2013 10:22 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

The IRS is not supposed to use its power against anyone except criminals and others who are intent in breaking the law, or overthrowing the US Constitution, but not against groups that peacefully oppose specific government policies.

As for the 1% using their money to block the 99% who want to tax it away from them, that is what's called "checks and balances:" The struggle between the Haves and Have-Nots.

May. 13 2013 10:17 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

Where’s the outrage over the political use of the IRS from (so-called) “progressives”? This should concern everyone.

What if an administration was harassing environmental groups or (OMG!) gay rights groups? Can you imagine the uproar from the left?

May. 13 2013 10:14 AM
Ben from Westchester

To be clear:

If anyone at the IRS indeed targeted groups based on political content, that is wrong. That doesn't mean that it is a scandal (as the Koch Brothers and Fox News want us to believe) but it is indeed wrong.

But -- PLEASE -- we are only a few months away from the last election. I hope the American public hasn't forgotten that the major problem with 501(c)4 groups is UNDER REGULATION and not OVER REGULATION. Most of these groups should indeed be voided, not treated as poor victims of some conspiracy.

They are legally supposed to be "social welfare" groups and not primarily involved in affecting elections and using the tax system to shelter donors. And that is clearly, precisely, what they are doing.

So the first four hundred hearings in the Senate should be about reforming our election system and removing money from it, not listening to Karl Rove and Koch brothers attorneys complaining about an overbearing federal government. We've heard that one already and voted it down.

May. 13 2013 10:08 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

OH, LORDY, where to begin today with Barry NIXON’S deliciously growing scandal list?
(... and it was NOT just tea party groups)

Barack Hussein NIXON has an enemies list to rival Tricky Dick’s.

The Little Dictator doesn’t just golf (now 122 days and counting), he harasses private citizens who are exercising their first amendment rights. Apparently, this “transformative” President (LOL, remember that?) is just another common petty thug.

May. 13 2013 09:45 AM

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