Hillary Clinton had to pause for a lozenge at the 10-and-a-half-hour mark, and her grilling by the House Benghazi committee wrapped up 30 minutes later. The assessments of the hearing, which was occasionally tense and Blumenthal-centric, will soon start rolling in, but the Washington Post offers up an instant one in its headline: "GOP lands no clear punches while sparring with Clinton over Benghazi." As for new ground, the New York Times says the hearing "served largely as a replay of highly contested arguments from previous congressional hearings, press examinations, and Sunday-morning talk shows." The Los Angeles Times has a similar take: "No new information, but ample partisan argument." Asked on CNN immediately afterward what he'd learned that was new from Clinton, panel chief Trey Gowdy said he didn't think she provided anything the panel didn't already know.
Other first drafts:
- Fox News: "[A] central GOP allegation was that Clinton paid more attention to emails from friend Sidney Blumenthal than pleas from murdered diplomat Chris Stevens to increase security in the face of growing threats. But, even as Clinton said she 'took responsibility,' she accepted little blame for the denial of security requests before the attack, or for the faulty narrative about an anti-Islam video that formed after."
- Wall Street Journal: "Clinton endured a daylong congressional grilling over the 2012 terrorist attack in Libya, largely avoiding the sorts of pitfalls that Republicans could exploit in the 2016 election."
- Politico: "In a contentious hearing that veered between partisan fisticuffs and technical discussions of the State Department's chain of command, Republicans pressed Clinton with questions about why she wasn't aware of numerous pleas for additional security at the Benghazi compound before the attacks. That wasn't her job, she argued—but should [Ambassador Chris] Stevens have asked her for help, he would have gotten it, she added."
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