Lost in the Fox News-led, right-wing desire to pin the Benghazi tragedy on President Obama is the fact that in 2011, House Republicans led several efforts to prevent or curb Barack Obama from having the necessary deployment of US Armed Forces in Libya. And, yes, these actions were specifically against Libya, where Benghazi is located.
On June 3, 2011 the House of Representatives voted on a resolution declaring that President Barack Obama could not deploy, establish, or maintain the presence of units and members of the United States Armed Forces on the ground in Libya. The vote was 266-144 for the GOP-established resolution and Rep. Eric Cantor voted in favor of the resolution to declare that the President could not deploy troops, a resolution that Speaker of the House John Boehner introduced.
This is what Speaker Boehner said last year on the website where he introduced the legislation:
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) unveiled a House resolution today on Libya that (1) establishes that the president has not asked for congressional authorization, and that the Congress has not granted it; (2) reasserts Congress’ constitutional role on funding; (3) requires the president to provide within 14 days information on the mission that should have been provided from the start; and (4) reaffirms the vote we took last week that says there should be no troops on the ground. Boehner released the following statement:
“The American people and members on both sides of the aisle are concerned about questions that have gone unanswered regarding our mission in Libya. The President has failed to explain to the nation how this military action is consistent with U.S. national security goals and policy. In fact, this Administration has committed American resources to enforcing a U.N. resolution that is inconsistent with our stated policy goals and national interests when it comes to removing Muammar Qadafi from power. The resolution we will vote on tomorrow will enable members to clearly express the will of our constituents — in a responsible way that reflects our commitments to our allies and our troops.
Republicans can’t have it both ways: curtail the President’s actions in Libya and reduce spending for State Department activities over there, including embassies, then blame Obama for the Benghazi mess, when they set the table for it.