It turns out John Boehner’s smoking gun Benghazi email was more like a firecracker that has blown up in the Speaker’s face.
At his press conference yesterday, Speaker Boehner demanded that the the White House turn over a Benghazi related email,
I hope you all tuned in to yesterday’s hearing on the tragedy in Benghazi. We learned that on September 12 – the day after the attacks and four days before Susan Rice’s TV appearances – a senior State Department official emailed her superiors to relay that the Libyan ambassador – she had told the Libyan Ambassador that the attack was conducted by Islamic terrorists.
The State Department would not allow our committees to keep copies of this email when it was reviewed. And I would call on the president to order the State Department to release this email so that the American people can see it.
According to Boehner this was the Benghazi smoking gun, only it wasn’t.
The New York Times has looked at the email, and it doesn’t say what Boehner thinks it says,
But a copy of the e-mail reviewed by The New York Times indicates that A. Elizabeth Jones, the senior State Department official who wrote it, referred to “Islamic extremists,” not terrorists.
The distinction is important, administration officials said, because while the White House did not initially characterize the attack as terrorism, senior officials, including Ambassador Susan E. Rice, acknowledged the possibility that extremists had been involved in the assault.
Speaker Boehner demanded the release of an email that he thought would prove the White House Benghazi cover up, only to find that the email supports what the Obama administration has been saying.
This hasn’t stopped Republicans from claiming that it doesn’t make any difference whether the administration referred to Islamic terrorists or Islamic extremists, even though Boehner based his entire argument on the belief that the email referred to Islamic terrorists.
John Boehner has become a cartoon character. He is Wile E. Coyote falling off the cliff, as one harebrained scheme after another goes wrong.
Boehner hopped on the Benghazi train just as it went off the tracks, and now the derailed Speaker has to answer for yet another leadership failure.