Stephanie Cutter, senior campaign staffer to President Obama, came out swinging this morning when addressing the controversy over the consulate attack in Libya that killed four Americans on September 11.
Stephanie Cutter has been a vocal and visible campaign staffer, and she spoke to the issue of security, Libya and the White House’s response to the tragedy during an interview on this morning’s Today show ahead of tonight’s foreign policy showdown between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.
At the second debate, Obama and Romney sparred on the issue of Libya, with Romney asserting that Obama had not called the attack an “act of terror” for a full two weeks following the tragedy. Obama countered, demanding moderator Candy Crowley pull a transcript of the remarks he made in the White House Rose Garden the following day.
Confirming that Obama did indeed say “act of terror” when speaking of the Libya attack, the incident set off a chain of bickering across aisles as the White House’s reaction to the Benghazi attack was scrutinized. Cutter addressed the controversy this morning ahead of the final debate, saying:
“The president has been clear it was a terrible tragedy that took place in Benghazi; we lost four American lives. He initiated an investigation to get to the bottom of it, of what happened and how we can keep our embassies safe all over the country.”
Cutter continued, hitting back at critics who have assailed Obama on transparency within the administration:
“Every step of the way, information is learned, as intelligence is approved, of what happened on the ground that night — the president makes it available to members of Congress and the public. It’s been a very transparent process and he’s determined to bring whoever perpetrated this against our four Americans to justice.”
Stephanie Cutter also reminded the media that four American lives had been lost, and the incident should not be politicized for personal gain:
“We live in a dangerous world — any time American lives are lost it’s a terrible tragedy and the president acted quickly to make sure that every other embassy was protected. We’re getting to the bottom of this and we need to work this investigation through. It’s really important that we not politicize this process.”
Did you catch Stephanie Cutter on Today this morning?