It’s no secret that the American right believes that President Obama refused to call the Benghazi attack “terrorism” for political purposes even after Candy Crowley debunked the meme on national TV during the presidential debate. But CNBC host Maria Bartiromo took the meme to a whole new level today, accusing the President of attempting to drum up support for cuts to military spending at home — an assertion which her guest, Senator John McCain (R-AZ), pivoted off of rather than challenged:
BARTIROMO: Senator, I don’t understand. This whole Benghazi story boggles the mind. I mean, It was September 11th. The embassies were burned, our ambassador was murdered. The Wall Street Journal reported that the CIA told the President for ten days in his daily briefings that we could see an attack on the U.S. consulate and there was [sic] the result of protests. Why would the President not call it out for what it was on day one? Why wait so long to tell the American people that it was a terrorist attack? Is it to justify defense cuts? To make everybody believe since bin Laden is dead, everything’s quiet on the home front? I don’t even understand why the President of the United States would not call it what it was from day one.
MCCAIN: I think primarily it was this narrative that the President has been saying for so long that he got bin Laden, which we all appreciate, but then that al-Qaeda is on the run.