It’s a tale of two political realities — and this week, President Obama signaled that he won’t be cowed by the picture of scandal and coverup painted by hyperpartisan House Republicans and their enablers in the right-wing media.
On Wednesday, the president elevated Susan Rice, who has been the focus of conservative outrage over the incorrect talking points she offered about the Benghazi attack, to national security adviser.
That move was met with surprise bordering on shock in Fox News land, where the administration is depicted as rocked by growing scandal as GOP investigators raise critical new questions hinting at a Benghazi coverup or suggesting White House complicity in the IRS mess.
In the real world, however, where conclusions are based on evidence rather than assumptions, those mismanaged messes stop well short of revealing nefarious doings by the White House. The administration clearly thinks that the Benghazi story in particular has run its course. The president is essentially betting that instead of making House Republicans’ investigatory efforts more relevant, Rice’s elevation will reveal it as a ceaseless partisan obsession.
Obama sent a related signal on Tuesday by holding a high-profile Rose Garden event to nominate three judges for the D.C. Court of Appeals. The message there is even more explicit. The White House intends to shine a brighter light on the Senate minority’s foot-dragging on its nominees.
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