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Benghazi terrorist attack follows Obama on the campaign trail

The terrorist attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, continues to follow President Obama as he faces an extremely close reelection bid and the expected onslaught of Hurricane Sandy.

By Staff writer / October 28, 2012

President Barack Obama speaks to supporters at a campaign event at Cleveland Burke Lakefront Airport, in Cleveland Ohio.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

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The terrorist attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, last month continues to follow President Obama, interrupting his main jobs these days: Dealing with the expected onslaught of Hurricane Sandy as well as a hard-fought and extremely close reelection bid.

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He was asked about it again in weekend interviews, vowing to hold members of his administration accountable for any intelligence or military failures that might have led to the killing of US Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other embassy personnel on the anniversary of 9/11.

“What my attitude on this is is if we find out there was a big breakdown and somebody didn’t do their job, they’ll be held accountable,” Mr.  Obama told MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski during a New Hampshire campaign stop Saturday. “Ultimately as Commander-in-Chief I am responsible and I don’t shy away from that responsibility.”

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Meanwhile, the time it takes to conduct thorough investigations – as yet incomplete – has sparked much speculation and commentary, some of it informed but much of it strictly partisan.

“This is an appalling tale of, at the very least, gross incompetency and utter lack of transparency,” writes conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin in the Washington Post Sunday. “President Obama, a little more than a week before the election, won’t tell Americans what happened. Well, why should he – the press doesn’t hound him, the liberal elite still rushes to his defense, and his White House attack dogs bark ‘Politics!’ whenever legitimate questions are asked.”

From the left, writer and broadcaster Earl Ofari Hutchinson writes on his Huffington Post blog:

“President Obama's critics jumped on [recently released emails regarding the Benghazi attack] supposedly as smoking gun proof that the White House engaged in a massive cover-up to keep the truth from the American people.”

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