‘Obama No More Responsible for Benghazi Than Bush Was for 9/11,’ Dem Says

November 15, 2012 - 11:49 AM

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Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) (AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) - Urging his fellow lawmakers not to let Thursday’s hearing on Benghazi “devolve into a political spectacle,” Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) said President Obama isn’t responsible for the terror attack on the U.S. consulate and CIA annex.

“You know Barack Obama was no more responsible for what happened in Benghazi than George Bush was for September 11th or than Ronald Reagan was with the blowing up of the U.S. Marines in Beirut.”

Engel, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee noted that the election is over -- and "Americans have had enough of it.  They want us to solve problems and not go on political witch hunts. I am very concerned at some the political rhetoric that I hear.”

Engel stressed the importance of being “united” and advised against attempts “to point fingers” at the president or his administration.

“We want to get to the bottom of this. We don’t want anything to be covered up, but I think that we have to do that from the point of view of American unity -- not to try to score political points here and there,” Engel said.

Instead of pointing fingers at the Obama administration, Engel wants to “say what went wrong and how can we fix it so that it doesn’t go wrong in the future.”

At a White House press conference on Wednesday, President Obama said if members of Congress have a problem with the way his administration handled the aftermath of the terror attacks – blaming them on an obscure video -- they should take their complaints to him:

“If Senator McCain and Senator Graham and others want to go after somebody, they should go after me. And I'm happy to have that discussion with them,” Obama said.

“But for them to go after the U.N. ambassador, who had nothing to do with Benghazi and was simply making a presentation based on intelligence that she had received, and besmirch her reputation, is outrageous,” he said.

In response, Senator Lindsey Graham tweeted: “Mr. President, don’t think for one minute I don’t hold you ultimately responsible for #Benghazi.”