Members of Congress: We know nothing!

Knowledge is power, especially in Washington, D.C.

That’s why it’s been a bit unusual for members of Congress (who are not involved in a scandal) to claim ignorance.

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After President Obama last week said “every member of Congress has been briefed” on the nation’s surveillance programs, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle cried foul.

Rep. Billy Long (R-Mo.) tweeted, “Not quite!”

Others who disputed Obama’s account included freshman Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) and Sens. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.).

White House press secretary Jay Carney walked back the president’s comments a bit on Monday: “I can’t speak to every individual member. What I can say is it is simply true there is substantial congressional oversight.”

Former House Security Committee Chairman Pete King (R-N.Y.), who sits on the Intelligence Committee, doesn’t have much sympathy for members who are raising a ruckus. During a Monday interview on Fox News, King said, “They could have gotten a briefing whenever they wanted to … So people who are suddenly claiming they’re so excited, maybe it’s because they weren’t paying attention.”

But we hear  it’s not quite that simple as the Intelligence Committee has to formally approve such member requests.