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Tags: Kay Bailey Hutchison

Kinzinger Claim of Benghazi Lies Echoed by Senator Hutchison



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Late last week, a spokesman for former secretary of state Hillary Clinton accused Representative Adam Kinzinger (R., Ill.) of a “brazen deceit” for his claim that Clinton said the Benghazi attacks were not a terrorist attack in a classified briefing, and that she actually “screamed” at a member of Congress who suggested Benghazi was the work of terrorists.

Clinton aide Nick Merrill said that the briefing was September 20, nine days after the attack, not two days, as Kinzinger recalled. He also scoffed, “So we are to believe that he woke up today, 10 months and 27 days later, and suddenly remembered he heard something that 434 other people somehow missed? Not so much.”

Of course, Kinzinger did in fact ask Secretary Clinton about her comments in that briefing at a January 23 House hearing; she asserted, “I did not say that it was video, that it was about the video for Libya.”

A State Department press briefing on September 20 mentions Hillary’s briefing. Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland confirmed, “She will be there with the Director of National Intelligence Clapper. She’ll be there with Deputy Secretary of Defense Ash Carter. She’ll also be up there with Sandy Winnefeld from the Joint Chiefs, and she’ll have both a House session and a Senate session.”

Kinzinger is one of only a handful of House members to talk about their session, but more than a few senators came out of Clinton’s briefing in their side claiming she and the others had no useful information to share:

Senators say they were rebuffed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when they pressed for more information about the attack that killed U.S. envoy Christopher Stevens in Libya.

“That is the most useless, worthless briefing I have attended in a long time,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) told reporters after the closed-door session.

“It was like pulling teeth to get information yesterday,” [South Carolina Sen. Lindsey] Graham said of the meeting with Clinton and other administration officials. “A lot of senators were frustrated. And you pick up major newspapers in the country and you find details not shared with you.”

The Wall Street Journal published a similarly detailed account of the attack.

“We were told nothing. We were told absolutely nothing,” said Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), ranking Republican on the Armed Services Panel.

Kinzinger’s accusation echoes a late-November claim by Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison:

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Tex., said on CNN that she was “very concerned” about the administration’s response, citing information given during a classified Senate briefing Sept. 20, more than a week after the attack.

“They were telling us things that they knew, that we even saw in the press, were not correct information,” she said, adding that “I do think we need to go into this in depth.”

Tags: Adam Kinzinger , Kay Bailey Hutchison , Hillary Clinton

Cruz, Williams Campaign Web Sites Up and Running Already



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That didn’t take long. Texas Republicans Michael Williams and Ted Cruz have web sites up and running for their Senate campaigns.

I suspect many conservatives will find the choice between the two like selecting between their two favorite meals, wishing they had enough room for both. Jay Nordlinger sings the praises of Cruz here; meanwhile, RedState’s Erick Erickson endorsed Michael Williams last year when it looked like Kay Bailey Hutchison might retire early, but is now on the fence.

Tags: Kay Bailey Hutchison , Michael Williams , Ted Cruz

Hutchison Retires; Biennial Democrat Comeback Hype Begins Anew



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Texas senator Kay Bailey Hutchison announced she will not seek reelection. This means that roughly half the Republicans in elected office in Texas will begin thinking about running for her seat.

Inevitably, the Democratic contenders and ultimate nominee will receive national coverage, and we will hear another two years’ worth of stories of “the comeback of the Texas Democrats.” Every two years since George W. Bush beat Ann Richards in 1994, we have heard about the imminent comeback of Texas Democrats; they’re always coming back, but never seem to arrive.

2010: Texas Democrats are raking in funds for ‘10 elections

2008: Texas Democrats believe time’s right for a comeback

2006: Texas Democrats say 2006 could be the year

2004: Texas Democrats feel ready for comeback

Is it possible a good Democratic candidate could beat a lousy Republican one? Sure. But it will be supremely difficult with Obama at the top of the ticket.

Tags: Barack Obama , Kay Bailey Hutchison , Texas

Dallas Mayor Running for Senate in 2012?



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Tom Leppert, the mayor of Dallas (an officially nonpartisan position), is being mentioned as a possible Senate candidate in 2012.

It’s no secret that the mayor wants to run for Senate in 2012, and that his most loyal supporters are on board.

Running for re-election as mayor and then running for Senate could be impractical, since the GOP primary is only months after the next mayoral term would begin.

So Leppert, a Republican, has been waiting for Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Dallas, to make a decision on her plans. Her third term ends in 2012, and she has not said whether she’ll seek re-election.

Leppert and Hutchison are allies, and he would rather not run against her in a March 2012 primary.

Leppert endorsed Rick Perry for governor earlier this year. In March, he appeared with Sarah Palin at a fundraising dinner for a new women’s pregnancy center in Dallas.

Tags: Kay Bailey Hutchison , Sarah Palin , Tom Leppert

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