The Corner

Carney Has to Be Careful

You got the sense today that the White House’s propaganda arm is starting to play Benghazi very, very carefully. Up until now they’ve been able to get by fairly easily on the fact that most of the relevant evidence is on the other side of executive privilege, or in the hands of politically appointed loyalists, and on the White House Press Corps’ indifference. But Greg Hicks might have been the first leak in the dam. Plenty of reporters are happy to trade narrative management for access, but fewer are willing to be made to look like fools in such an obvious manner. You saw a new feistiness in their questions today. 

You also saw the White House delay Carney’s briefing by hours, hold a off-the-record “deep background” session on Benghazi with a secret group of reporters, and resort to unusually lawyerly parsing of who ordered the changes to the talking points. I suspect they are starting to realize that how they handle the next few days could determine whether this fizzles out or results in heads rolling.


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