CNN Anchor Asks Bush To Explain His Double Standard For Benghazi And 9/11. It Doesn’t Go Well.

Kira Lerner

Kira Lerner Political Reporter, Think Progress

During the latest stop in his media tour to defend his brother’s actions as president, Jeb Bush asked on CNN Sunday if anyone actually blames his brother for the attacks on 9/11, saying if they do, “they’re totally marginalized in our society.”

CNN’s Jake Tapper pushed back, asking Bush about the Republican Party’s double standard.

“Obviously Al-Qaeda was responsible for the terrorist attack of 9/11,” Tapper said. “But how do you respond to critics who ask if your brother and his administration bear no responsibility at all, how do you then make the jump that President Obama and Secretary Clinton are responsible for what happened at Benghazi?”

The younger Bush had no coherent answer.

“Well I, it’s the question on Benghazi which is hopefully will now finally get the truth to it, is: was that, was the place secure?” he said, clearly flustered. “They had a responsibility, Department of State, to have proper security.”

Bush pointed out that “it’s what you do after that matters” when it comes to leadership, yet he could not explain why the Republican Party continues to attack Clinton for the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya that left a U.S. ambassador dead.

The controversy began on Friday when Donald Trump asserted that the older Bush brother was president at the time of the 9/11 attacks. “When you talk about George Bush, I mean, say what you want, the World Trade Center came down during his time,” Trump said. “He was president, O.K.?”

Jeb Bush then contested the seemingly indisputable comment, calling Trump’s comments “pathetic” and insisting “my brother kept us safe.” The New York Times reported that “[b]laming 9/11 on Mr. Bush is taboo for Republicans and has largely been off-limits for Democrats.” Yet Republicans will force Clinton to testify before a public hearing of the U.S. House Select Committee on Benghazi this week.


This has been reposted from Think Progress.

Kira Lerner is a Political Reporter for ThinkProgress. She previously worked as a reporter covering litigation and policy for the legal newswire Law360. She has also worked as an investigative journalist with the Chicago Innocence Project where she helped develop evidence that led to the exoneration of a wrongfully convicted man from Illinois prison. A native of the Washington, D.C. area, Kira earned her bachelor's degree at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.