Romney campaign: Ask about Benghazi tonight
October 16th, 2012
04:07 PM ET
2 years ago

Romney campaign: Ask about Benghazi tonight

Hempstead, NY (CNN) - If asked about it at tonight's second presidential debate, Mitt Romney will offer his take on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's attempt to accept responsibility for the attack on the U.S consulate in Libya, campaign officials to the GOP nominee tell CNN.

On an official trip to Lima, Peru, Clinton accepted blame for the diplomatic assault that led to the deaths of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

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"I take responsibility," Clinton told CNN Foreign Affairs reporter Elise Labott.

Asked what Romney would say about Clinton's comments, an adviser to the former Massachusetts governor declined to offer specifics.

"Stay tuned on what he will say," the official said.

In the hours running up to the debate, Romney campaign officials gave President Barack Obama the advantage in the evening's town hall format.

However, those aides noted Romney has held well over 100 town hall events during the course of his second presidential run.

Romney will talk about the economy "every chance he gets," one campaign official said.

The campaign's advisers also stressed what they described as Romney's "record of bipartisanship," governing Massachusetts as a "conservative" while working with a Democratic-controlled legislature.

In response to the Libya security criticism, the Obama campaign is accusing Romney of seeking to politicize the deaths of American diplomats.

"Romney's criticized the President, but given his track record of taking both sides on every major foreign policy issue- including U.S. intervention in Libya – the impetus is on him to say what he'd do differently," the Obama campaign official said.


Filed under: 2012 • Libya • Mitt Romney • Presidential Debates
soundoff (57 Responses)
  1. Namejkane sfl a vote for lady parts romney the tax cheat and lyin lady parts ryan willcut your moms medicare and soc sec . .can you afford to pay for them???

    Why don't you ask why bush was a sleep at the wheel during the real 9_11 attack when the gop was in charge ,you should watch ,secrets of 9-11 on the national geo channel and you will never vote gop again !!!!!

    October 16, 2012 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  2. BENGHAZI-GATE

    It must be addressed.

    This is already bigger than Watergate. Nobody died in the Watergate scandal.

    October 16, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  3. rs

    Ask about Bush and 9/11. Does the GOP really want to go there?

    October 16, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  4. Namejkane sfl a vote for lady parts romney the tax cheat and lyin lady parts ryan willcut your moms medicare and soc sec . .can you afford to pay for them???

    Watch ,secrets of 9-11 on national geo channel and never vote gop again ,ever !!!

    October 16, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  5. Lemone

    Ask about those TAXES!!!!!!

    October 16, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  6. UBS, WILLARD & THE 4000+ AMERICAN AMNESTY DEAL

    Obama Campaign: Ask about 2009 AMNESTY tonight!

    October 16, 2012 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  7. AzDem

    Ask about his tax returns? Ask about his out sourcing jobs to China? Ask about his acquiring companys then selling them for record profit?

    October 16, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  8. UBS, WILLARD & THE 4000+ AMERICAN AMNESTY DEAL

    This goes to show you that Wilard is using this tragedy solely for political purposes. Ha haphazardly spoke immediately after the attack and made a fool f himself. Just as he used his so called "friendship" with Mr. Doherty out of context at the disgust of Mr. Doherty's family. This man is coward and has no soul. He'll say anything and do anything to get elected.

    October 16, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  9. cbr

    Ask Mr. Romney how he justifies signing on to the Norquist no taxes promise. Mr. Norquist has not more authority or power than any other American. He does not represent me or many others I know nor did Mr. Romney ask me or tell me why is he doing this. Does he need to placate people in his party just as he has with every other policy question?

    The idea that one man can hold sway over politicians is very unnerving and does not bode well for this county. Mr. Rpmney needs to explain to me and everyone else why he is giving power to this man. This is not something we do here in the US. IN countries where this is done the governments are weak and lose power easily.

    October 16, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  10. Where's the beef?

    And if Romney stresses his bipartisanship in Massachusetts, Obama better remind voters that Romney is running a very distant second on the polls there – in a state that so loved him!

    October 16, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  11. Woman In California

    "Stay tuned on what he will say," the official said.

    Who cares what this draft dodging, unAmerican creep has to say? How dare he comment or blame anyone when he spun five lazy, non military sons who are too busy making the talk show circuits to enlist in our military?

    I hope the president pulls a fast one tonight and as Willard is speaking against this country, they announce another big successful foreign policy decision by our president. Watch him squirm and go into complete denial.

    Go Obama!

    October 16, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  12. Austin

    How about we ask you about cannabis reform, oh wait some person in a wheelchair already did that.. and you told him to get lost. :-/

    October 16, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  13. Bill from GA

    As mitts knows, Hillary Clinton's attempt to accept responsibility are meaningless. This is not about responsibility, it is about attacking the President on Foreign Policy.

    As mitts said in "his infamous “47%” fundraiser, Romney assured a concerned donor that if a foreign policy crisis emerged late in the campaign, “I will work to find a way to take advantage of the opportunity.” And so he has." (From Time, online)

    October 16, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  14. Romney is confusing, seriously.

    Really? Romney: "Ask me a question I've rehersed and know how to answer." Again, Really? The Presidency is not a test you study to. You make decisions based solid character. Not what might be polling well at the time.

    October 16, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  15. Joe

    Romney ain't got a leg to stand on. His running mate, Paul Ryan, cut $ 250 million dollars from the Embassy Security fund. Romney's answer to every foreign Policy question is to bomb Iran. He's aligned himself to the Israeli lobby and the Military Industrial Complex. He' s all ready planning to build 15 new battle ships and to build more fighters and bombers to start WW lll. We're already tied down in two wars in the middle east and this "Idiot" for lack of a better word is ready to start a third one. If Obama don't get his head out of where the sun don't shine, he's going to lose the election to this George W. Bush clone.

    October 16, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  16. John Mann

    "Romney will talk about the economy "every chance he gets,". I sure hope so....especially since it's obvious that the Obama admin has fixed it and it's bouncing back big time now.

    "Romney campaign: Ask about Benghazi tonight" ya, that should be a real winner too. Politicize the death of a brave ambassador while reminding us how you (romney) got egg all over your face the first time you blundered into that subject.

    October 16, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  17. HUSSEIN OBAMA = HISTORY

    The media will probably let him of again as usual.

    October 16, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  18. ExRepublican

    Obama should ask Romney why the republican party stop funding security for international employee's.
    I blame the republican party.
    Obama please dont let Romney lie to american people in the debate.

    October 16, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  19. rrd

    Where's the beef?

    And if Romney stresses his bipartisanship in Massachusetts, Obama better remind voters that Romney is running a very distant second on the polls there – in a state that so loved him!

    ---------------------------------------------–

    Check the last time Mass ever voted for a republican president.

    October 16, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  20. Leroy

    Mitt Romney should be questioned about his decision to defer and flee to France when his country needed a "few good men" to fight in the Vietnam War!

    October 16, 2012 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  21. ExRepublican

    Obama ask why Mass rank for 47 in the country for jobs creation while Romney was governor.

    October 16, 2012 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  22. Borderless

    Yay! Obama fixed the economy! It has bounced back to the same unemployment rate he inherited. Of course the job gains were almost entirely in low paying unskilled labor and government jobs, which means we are actually poorer than when he took office, but that's what an Obama fix is all about. Take away the higher paying jobs. Add lower paying jobs. Problem solved. Good job, President Hollywood.

    October 16, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  23. Cedric Hill

    The Republicans continue to make an issue of this and they are dead wrong. It is actually absurd to think the President and Vice President would be informed of staffing issues in any government department. In this particular case, the request for more security was for the embassy in Tripoli and not the consulate in Benghazi. The security division within State has to assess security needs, not only for all embassies and consulates but also for security of high ranking government officials visiting the US. They need to assess and allocate funds based on an established budget (with the GOP house cut by $300 million). Further they have to evaluate security issues with the host country. Let us not forget, under Section 22 of the Vienna Convention it is the responsibility of the host country to provide security for the missions within their country. State has to gain permission from that country to supplement security with trained locals. Those security personnel, who guard the immediate perimeter, cannot prevent or repel a rocket attack or large mobs. It is virtually axiomatic that those who are responsible for security, whether a police department or fire department here in the US or military unit in Afghanistan always wants more personnel. I could go on and on, but in reality, the GOP are using this for political purposes and not to make our missions overseas safer.

    October 16, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  24. HUSSEIN OBAMA = HISTORY

    The Hussein Obama administration has already politicized this by blatantly lying about what happened from day 1. They covered the Sunday political talk circuit spewing the same pathetic lie on all of them. This could ONLY have come from the White House and Hussein Obama himself.

    October 16, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  25. Borderless

    Also, can Romney please ask Obama why he has a closet racist as a running mate. Repeating some of Biden's racist remarks here would violate CNN's rules of conduct so I can't offer specifics. You will have to Google it. Also, apparently calling Biden a racist violates CNN's rules of conduct. Ever the objective news source, eh CNN?

    October 16, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
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