On Susan Rice and How a Non-candidate Is Treated

There the posse of senators stood, facing a bank of microphones and television cameras before the full story was known, criticizing an Obama administration official. That official’s offense? Making statements in front of the cameras and on television before the full story was known. It is the enduring image of the drama—or would it be farce—called “when Susan Rice met Washington’s political buzz saw.”

What was striking in the seemingly endless coverage was how little actual information was revealed about Susan Rice or the tragic attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, when U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in a terrorist attack first thought to be a protest over an anti-Muhammad video. Was the crucial issue ever a supposed attempt by Rice to mislead, as her critics contend? Or did posturing in partisan Washington, always a part of the show, get in the way of the truth, and did the media do enough to cut through the clutter?