Nov 28, 2012 No Comments ›› Pat Dollard
Obama’s in a pickle with Susan Rice. The deal was, she intentionally lies for him and risks her reputation, and for that he makes her Secretary of State. What a sucker she was. The deal is going sideways, and I guarantee she was pissed when she got to his office.
NYT: Updated President Obama came to the defense of Susan E. Rice, his embattled ambassador to the United Nations, on Wednesday even as she came under fire from another Republican senator and saw her prospects for becoming secretary of state further clouded.
“Susan Rice is extraordinary,” the president said when a reporter asked about her reception in Congress. “Couldn’t be prouder of the job that she’s done.”
Mr. Obama made his comment as he convened his cabinet for the first time since his re-election. Ms. Rice was among those in the room. After the president defended her, the departing secretary of state, Hillary Rodham Clinton, led the other cabinet officers in a round of applause for her.
Ms. Rice arrived at the White House after another meeting went awry on Capitol Hill, where she has been trying to defuse Republican criticism of her televised assessments of the deadly attack on a diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya. After an hour-long meeting, Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, said she remained deeply troubled that Ms. Rice did not seem to have a good answer for why the White House did not immediately classify the attack as an act of terrorism.
“I continue to be troubled by the fact that the United Nations ambassador decided to play what was essentially a political role at the height of a contentious presidential election campaign,” Ms. Collins told a throng of reporters after the meeting concluded.
Ms. Collins is the latest Republican senator to meet with Ms. Rice this week and express significant concerns about her ability to lead the State Department if nominated by Mr. Obama. As one of the dwindling number of Republican moderates, Ms. Collins could be important for any confirmation should Mr. Obama eventually nominate Ms. Rice to replace Mrs. Clinton.
In an effort to smooth over growing tensions with Senate Republicans, Ms. Rice met with Senators John McCain of Arizona, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina on Tuesday. Yet all three senators said they were dismayed by what they had heard in the meeting. Ms. Ayotte and Mr. Graham went as far as to threaten to block Ms. Rice’s nomination.
Ms. Collins said she would need additional information before she could support Ms. Rice’s nomination. But in response to a question about support in the Senate for John Kerry of Massachusetts, who is Ms. Rice’s main rival for the job, Ms. Collins said, “I think John Kerry would be an excellent appointment and would be easily confirmed by his colleagues.”
After she met with Ms. Collins, Ms. Rice was also scheduled to meet with Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee on Wednesday.