McCain: Emails prove Benghazi ‘cover up'

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Thursday that recently released emails related to the terrorist attack in Benghazi proved the “cover up and obfuscation” of the Obama administration.

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“[This email] is all about the presidential campaign. It’s not about trying to find out who committed this heinous crime,” McCain said, referring the release of new emails from White House adviser Ben Rhodes. “Not a single person who was responsible for the murder of these four brave Americans has been brought to justice.”

In those emails, sent in advance of TV appearances by then-United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice, Rhodes said officials should make it a goal to show that the protests were based on an Internet video.

McCain vowed that he would “never give up on the issue until the truth is revealed” and reiterated his call for a select committee to investigate the matter.

“The time has now come for a select committee because these talking points raise more questions than are answered,” McCain said. “This is a cover up of a situation that was politically motivated … and the American people deserve to know the truth.”

On Sept. 11, 2012, terrorists killed four American at the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

Republicans have charged that the White House initially linked the attack to a protest because it wanted to play down the idea it was a terrorist attack before the presidential election. The administration eventually acknowledged the attack was an act of terrorism.

Lawmakers have also questioned why there wasn’t more security around the U.S. facility or a military extraction effort once the attack started.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Thursday that the new emails were “the smoking gun” proving the administration was trying to keep the truth from the public.

“They did not want you to know about this email … because it is the smoking gun,” Graham said on the Senate floor. “That shows they were constantly trying to manipulate the evidence. … That to me is unacceptable.” 

-- This report was updated at 4 p.m.

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