Bill Clinton defends Hillary Clinton over Benghazi
May 14th, 2014
03:51 PM ET
5 months ago

Bill Clinton defends Hillary Clinton over Benghazi

(CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton defended his wife Wednesday against renewed political tension over the 2012 Benghazi terror attack that left four Americans dead, including the U.S. ambassador.

He also argued there's been disproportionate attention on the deaths compared to diplomatic personnel killed when George W. Bush was president.

"In my opinion Hillary did what she should have done," Clinton said at an event in Washington.

The former president praised former secretary of state for creating a review committee that investigated the incident and came up with 29 recommendations, which she "started implementing."

He said the last time diplomatic staff killings became such a public issue was when he was president and terrorists bombed U.S. embassies in Africa.

"So, most Americans don't even know how many American diplomatic personnel were killed when President Bush was president," he said during an on-stage interview at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation's 2014 Fiscal Summit. "They don't know what, if any, after action review was done. What, if any, recommendations were made. What, if any, action was taken to implement those."

According to analysis by Politifact, which references the Global Terrorism Database, 66 people were killed at U.S. embassies and consulates during the Bush years, with the vast majority of them being non-U.S. citizens.

"So I think my advice to everybody involved is to not be defensive and realize what this is and answer the question," Clinton continued.

House Republicans last week voted to form a select committee to investigate the Benghazi attack, and some Republicans have argued that Hillary Clinton, a potential presidential contender in 2016, should be called to testify.


Filed under: Bill Clinton • Hillary Clinton • Libya
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    "So, most Americans don't even know how many American diplomatic personnel were killed when President Bush was president," he said during an on-stage interview at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation's 2014 Fiscal Summit. "They don't know what, if any, after action review was done. What, if any, recommendations were made. What, if any, action was taken to implement those."
    -------------------
    Most people don't know that one location was attacked twice with deadly casualties.

    May 14, 2014 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    You never hear republican outrage over David Foy or the 13 embassy attacks under Dubya.

    May 14, 2014 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  3. Tommy G

    How many of these other attacks and deaths involved the death of the highest ranking US diplomat in country, the Ambassador, that reported directly to Hillary Clinton? Answer: NONE.

    How many of these other attacks and deaths were preceded by numerous other attacks and threats that went unheeded? Answer: NONE.

    How many of these other attacks were aginst people that were begging for more security, but instead had their security CUT? Answer: NONE.

    How many of these other attacks have had a massive trail of lies and deceit spun arounbd them in order to conceal their true nature a few weeks before a national election? Answer: NONE.

    How many of these other attacks resulted in no help being sent to the people under attack? Answer: NONE.

    And yet the lying and deceitful Democrats would have you believe these attacks are the same when that is the furthest thing from the truth. Their lies and deceit continue unabated...

    May 14, 2014 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  4. rs

    The GOP fixation with Benghazi is one of two things: a delusional need for faux conspiracy, or; a very craven way to demonize a potential political rival, and to raise money off of it. Either way, the GOP comes off looking back.

    May 14, 2014 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  5. Donna

    Benghazi not a problem for Hillary huh lefties?!!! Now she has her hubby out lying for her and trying to con people with more smoke and mirrors. Oh yeah, Benghazi is going to a REAL BIG PROBLEM for Hillary Clinton.

    I can see the commercials now.... Hillary's old phone ringing at 3am commercial and her rolling over in bed as the Benghazi compound burns in the background. Ending in her screaching "What does it all matter?!" as the vision of 4 coffins fades to black.

    Some advice lefties.... start developing plan B.... Biden! Crazy Joe is just nuts and that is far less baggage than Hillary Clinton carries.

    May 14, 2014 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  6. Tampa Tim

    Fundraising off the deaths of 4 Americans in Benghazi , while ignoring the disasters under the Bush error, makes republicans a lower life form.

    May 14, 2014 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  7. just asking

    hey billy bob bubba! how many people are dead because you failed to give the go ahead for a head shot on osama bin laden when he was literally in the gun sights onf the cia? tens of thousands. thanks billy bob bubba but you have no credibility in this matter as you are an even bigger failure than hillary.

    May 14, 2014 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  8. Reggie53

    The problem with Hillary Clinton and this incident is that they lied about the whole incident and then she had the nerve to say "What difference does it make at this point now".......if it was her family she would want answers. She is just as guilty as the rest of the Obama administration who tried to cover up the real story. When the phone runs at 3:00 am, I wonder who will take the call or perhaps it will be ignored!!!!!!!

    May 14, 2014 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  9. Tampa Tim

    Republicans cut funding for security at our embassies and are now fundraising off the deaths their stupidity cost. But it is all the GOBaggers have, as they have no accomplishments to run on besides government shutdowns and credit downgrades.

    May 14, 2014 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. Tampa Tim

    Fox, Hannity and Rushbo have been lying, and the mental midgets just eat it up.

    May 14, 2014 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  11. Rudy NYC

    The Benghazi location was an "embassy annex." Wasn't Benghazi location being used as a CIA safe house? Didn't Amb. Stevens decline offers of more security forces in Libya because he didn't want to intimidate the locals, whom he felt relatively safe with?

    May 14, 2014 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  12. smith

    The difference between Benghazi and the attacks under GWB was GWB didn`t blame the attacks on a youtube video (which in a way defended the attackers in Benghazi).

    May 14, 2014 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. Vandal 46

    And who was responsible for not getting the funds for more security....you guessed it...the same people crying foul against Hillary are the same people who voted down more money for security...House Republicans. You rethugs are just getting more and more predictable, and idiotic. 66 people in diplomatic positions were killed under W, and because none of them was an ambassador....it wasn't a serious problem, as one poster attested. You righties are true pieces of work

    May 14, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  14. Lizzie

    Rudy/Dutch, differance is, NO ONE ever tried to cover up the killings by telling LIE after LIE.
    Tampa.... And the president was on his way to a fundraiser in Las Vegas, he did he care ?????

    May 14, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  15. just asking

    ProudDem
    Rick McDaniel
    The budgets in all Dem states tend to have shortfalls, simply because of all the welfare those states hand out to people who simply refuse to earn their own way in the world.
    __________________________________________________
    States receiving the most federal funding per tax dollar paid:
    1. New Mexico: $2.63
    2. West Virginia: $2.57
    3. Mississippi: $2.47
    4. District of Colombia: $2.41
    5. Hawaii: $2.38
    6. Alabama: $2.03
    7. Alaska: $1.93
    8. Montana: $1.92
    9. South Carolina: $1.92
    10. Maine: $1.78

    By my count, 8 of the top 10 are Red
    ---

    as clueless as ever.... and just is included in this 'federaql funding'? it is not like some of these places have a choice about military bases in their state. and then there is the fact that the federal goverment owns most of the land in alaska and montana. all that is property that cannot contribute to the states needs.

    1. New Mexico: $2.63 BLUE
    2. West Virginia: $2.57
    3. Mississippi: $2.47
    4. District of Colombia: $2.41 DEEP BLUE
    5. Hawaii: $2.38 DEEP BLUE
    6. Alabama: $2.03
    7. Alaska: $1.93
    8. Montana: $1.92
    9. South Carolina: $1.92
    10. Maine: $1.78 BLUE

    May 14, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  16. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    I think a bigger concern that needs to be addressed is why are republicans fundraising off of Benghazi. How inhumane is that? Have they no shame?

    May 14, 2014 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Reggie53

    The problem with Hillary Clinton and this incident is that they lied about the whole incident and then she had the nerve to say "What difference does it make at this point now".......if it was her family she would want answers. She is just as guilty as the rest of the Obama administration who tried to cover up the real story. When the phone runs at 3:00 am, I wonder who will take the call or perhaps it will be ignored!!!!!!!
    ---------------------------------
    In my opinion, if the administration didn't want to let the attackers know just how much we knew about what happened, then they were doing their jobs? I don't have a problem with that scenario.

    The problem that Republicans have is that Romney is seen on videotape promising to make any terrorist attack a campaign issue to use against the Obama campaign. The election is won and done, folks.

    May 14, 2014 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. freedom

    The Clintons have no shame! He lies under oath as president and is disbarred and basically impeached – she lies over the caskets of the men who were murdered under her watch as Secretary of State. There is no defense. The country has been subjected to enough of the Clinton corruptness. Time to move on.

    May 14, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  19. Hillary Clinton -- Buthcer of Benghazi

    In response to Tampon Timmie's lies about funding cuts being the cause of reduced security:

    In testimony Wednesday before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Charlene Lamb, a deputy assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, was asked, “Was there any budget consideration and lack of budget which led you not to increase the number of people in the security force there?”

    Lamb responded, “No, sir.”

    Recall that Lamb is the person who denied requests from the top diplomatic security officer in Libya to retain a 16-man team of military personnel who had been protecting diplomats.

    May 14, 2014 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  20. 2_indy1600

    There it is again....the wagging finger with advice on how to perform under oath. Just doesn't get any easier, and will continue to be fun. What difference does it make to a liar?

    May 14, 2014 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  21. Hillary Clinton -- Russian Reset FAILURE, Benghazi FAILURE, $6 BILLION LOST FAILURE

    I'll bet she wishes she had a Benghazi Reset button instead of a Russian Reset button. But I doubt it could possibly reset all the lies she has told about Benghazi, even the the families of the dead. How low, just to save her political skin, as well as Obama's.

    May 14, 2014 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  22. Dumbas[R]ocks

    Have you all noticed, like I have, that the usual cabal of rightwing trolls that post on the "PoliticalTicker" continually get the intellectual dog-living-crap beat out of them, no matter what the subject? I have never before seen such a group strive so strenuously for self-embarrassment, while totally ignoring reality.

    And a lesson in terminology for all you Teatards out there: rightwing drama queens, making things up as they go, are not true "conservatives". Not even close.

    May 14, 2014 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  23. Vandal 46

    Donna, the only problem for Hillary about Benghazi is from mindless people like yourself. When you start holding your party members accountable for their transgressions, then and only then will you be seen as legitimate, until then, your just a hollow talking head. Just another republican

    May 14, 2014 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  24. tom l

    I love the new "talking point" about repubs raising money off of Benghazi as if that's any worse than raising money off of Sandy Hook. IOIYAD (going old school, Sniffit!)

    By the way, it's not that the embassy was attacked that is the problem. That happens during the fog of war so I don't blame anyone for that (other than being there in the first place which is just another in the long line of repub and dem foreign follies). It's the cover up afterwards.

    And rs, I will ask again for you to give me a rational explanation for Hillary Clinton telling the father of the fallen navy seal that we were going to arrest the guy who made the video several days after the attack (when there was no more "confusion"). And, I beg you, don't point to some bad behavior by a repub as an answer.

    May 14, 2014 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  25. Tony D

    Yikes... calling out the Democrat's main man to lie for Hillary Clinton??? Obviously trouble in Clintonville, as there should be when you don't do your job and people get killed because of it. ANd then you fabricate a massive lie and make others go out and do your dirty work for you to keep you clean of damaging video and sound bites.

    Yes Hillary... it DOES matter.

    May 14, 2014 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
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