Rubio says Hillary Clinton ‘should have known’ of Benghazi dangers


Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) talks to reporters after a closed door briefing June 4, 2014 on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Officials from the Obama Administration were on the Hill to brief Senate members on the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Tuesday that former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton should have been aware of the security dangers before the deadly 2012 attacks on U.S. diplomatic outposts in Benghazi, Libya, and that if she's going to tout her record as the nation's chief diplomat, she must also own up to her shortcomings.

"Who made this decision not to have sufficient security, and are those types of decisions still being made?" asked Rubio in an interview on "CBS This Morning," according to a transcript provided by CBS. "Those are valid inquiries, and she has to have some level of responsibility, because if she’s going to brag about her time at the State Department, she also has to talk openly about her failures."

Rubio characterized the Benghazi attacks as a "systemic breakdown of the State Department’s security apparatus," adding that Clinton "ran the State Department. She should have known of the dangers that existed there."

Rubio was responding to comments Clinton made in a lengthy interview with ABC News broadcast Monday. She said that Republican criticism over her handling of Benghazi is more incentive to make a 2016 presidential bid, not less.

"Actually, it’s more of a reason to run, because I do not believe our great country should be playing minor league ball,” Clinton told Diane Sawyer. “We ought to be in the majors. I view this as really apart from — even a diversion from — the hard work that the Congress should be doing about the problems facing our country and the world.”

Rubio responded, "I don’t think the issue of Benghazi is minor league ball. Four Americans have lost their lives serving our country."

The State Department, he argued, "had at its disposal a steady stream of reporting about how much danger that facility in Benghazi was in. It is a fact that they did not take sufficient security measures."

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.
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