Tuesday, May 21, 2013
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Sen. Susan Collins
Those officers fought their way into the compound and helped the consulate staff escape to a nearby CIA annex, which later came under attack.
Lieberman and Collins have requested a long list of documents from the State Department, the Defense Department, the Justice Department and intelligence agencies. Collins said Friday that those documents are beginning to trickle in, but at a slower pace than she prefers.
Echoing comments from other Republican lawmakers, Collins criticized the Obama administration for its initial public statements attributing the attack to protests over an anti-Islamic video. Administration officials and others have blamed the inaccurate statements on the "fog of war" immediately after the attack.
The Senate Homeland Security Committee has yet to set dates for hearings on the incident. Members are due to receive a classified briefing after Tuesday's elections.
Asked whether her committee could avoid politicizing the issue, Collins noted that the committee has conducted in-depth, bipartisan investigations into numerous other emotional, high-profile issues. Those include the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, shootings at the Fort Hood Army base in Texas and the Bush administration's failings in the initial response to Hurricane Katrina.
"So I think we have shown time and again that we can conduct a fair and thorough investigation even in an environment that has become increasingly partisan," Collins said.
Washington Bureau Chief Kevin Miller can be contacted at 317-6256 or at: