In forceful, confrontational, and at times emotional testimony today, outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took full responsibility for the Benghazi catastrophe, detailed security improvements — and pushed back against shrill and often derisive questions and comments from a few members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee:
In long-awaited testimony, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday asserted that she had moved quickly to improve the security of American diplomats after the September attack in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans and prompted a scathing review of State Department procedures.
“As I have said many times since Sept. 11, I take responsibility,” Mrs. Clinton said, reading from a prepared statement. “Nobody is more committed to getting this right. I am determined to leave the State Department and our country safer, stronger and more secure.” …
In a rare moment of confrontation, Mrs. Clinton responded to persistent questions from Senator Ron Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican, by saying that there was too much focus on how the Benghazi attack was characterized in its early hours and not enough on how to prevent a recurrence.
“What difference at this point does it make?” she said, raising her voice and noting that there were “four dead Americans.”
“It is our job to figure out what happened and to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” she snapped.
Sen. Johnson decided to get in a cheap shot… er, last word after the hearing:
Johnson accused Clinton of staging her outburst with “theatrics”.
“I’m not sure she had rehearsed for that type of question,” he told BuzzFeed. “I think she just decided before she was going to describe emotionally the four dead Americans, the heroes, and use that as her trump card to get out of the questions. It was a good way of getting out of really having to respond to me.”