Thingish Things

It’s the Coverup that Gets You

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Oct• 20•12

Take out your pencil and write 100 times, “It’s the cover up that gets you.”

And when you’re done with that, write it 100 more times.

That ought to be an exercise for anyone considering running for public office.

It’s been some 40 years since Watergate, which inspired that cliche, yet, incredibly, the Obama administration finds itself, almost two weeks before Election Day, trampling through the wreckage of its own careless cover-up.

Obama and his people badly need to get momentum back on their side, but as long as the Libyastory remains unresolved, they cannot get back on the offense. And time is running out.

The Obama-Libya fiasco is mind-boggling, especially when you consider the people involved:Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and David Axelrod are famously capable political players. They know better than almost anyone how important it is to get out ahead of a bad story. Secretary of StateClinton could write a textbook on it, and I mean that as a compliment.

Yet here we are, more than a month after the sacking of a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, and the story is bigger than on the day it occurred. It just keeps growing.

Psychologists can no doubt pinpoint the initial instinct to fudge facts — to make bad news sound just a little better — but that doesn’t explain why day after day, week after week, this administration has failed to come clean and give a considered and definitive answer on what happened. That’s the only thing that’s going to make this story go away.

I’m not talking about what happened with the attacks. That’s become fairly clear: There was a deadly terrorist assault on a clearly underguarded U.S. consulate on the anniversary of 9/11. What needs to be explained is why the White House spokesman, the State Department and UN AmbassadorSusan Rice told the American public a tale about the nature of the attack for more than two weeks that doesn’t seem to be true, and that they may have known wasn’t true.

What’s even more head-scratching is how President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden both managed to make the story worse in their respective debate performances.Everyone on the debate prep teams knew this question was coming, yet the president and vice president flubbed it. Indeed, they exacerbated it. They had an opportunity on a national stage to put this story behind them and both men kicked it back into high gear.

The rest of this column is available at Newsday Westchester.  Thanks for reading!

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