Susan Collins and Joe Lieberman, the leaders, repsectively, of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, yesterday sent separate letters to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, asking for classified documents and briefings about the Benghazi 9/11 attack.
In the letter to Sec. Clinton they write: "If any of Ambassador Rice's public statements on September 16 were inaccurate, please explain the reason for the inaccuracies and identify the persons most knowledgeable about how and why inaccurate information was publicly conveyed."
Collins and Lieberman also ask Clinton if the diplomatic security budgets for the past three fiscal years have been fully expended and what the effect of unobligated funds might be.
Also Friday, three Republican Senators wrote to Clapper, CIA Director David Petraeus, and Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan, pushing for a response to a query they made last week about the Benghazi situation. Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Kelly Ayotte wrote in their follow-up letter: "We have important responsibilities to our constituents, who are demanding clear answers to the questions we sent to you. Your lack of response is inhibiting our abiity to perform our duties on behalf of our fellow citizens. We therefore continue to seek answers to our questions and expect a reply as soon as possible."
On Wednesday, Senate Intelligence Chairman Dianne Feinstein raised questions about Clapper's actions following the attack: "I think what happened was the Director of Intelligence, who is a very good individual, put out some speaking points on the initial intelligence assessment. I think that was possibly a mistake. There's no question but that it was a terrorist attack, there is no question but that the security was inadequate, and I think that there is no question that we need to work on our intelligence."