Updated 01/23/2013 07:45 PM
Hillary Clinton testifies about Benghazi
In two highly anticipated hearings on Capitol Hill, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton finally answered pointed questions about the September 11th attack on the U.S. Embassy in Libya. Washington, D.C. bureau reporter Erin Billups has the details.
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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- At both the Senate and House hearings on the U.S. consulate attack in Benghazi, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton admitted she felt responsible, tearing up as she spoke of receiving the flag-draped caskets of four Americans killed last September.
"For me, this is not just a matter of policy, it's personal. I put my arms around the mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, sons and daughters and the wives left alone to raise their children," Clinton said.
Clinton’s remorse was not enough though for several Republican lawmakers who have been waiting for months to question her.
"I would have relieved you of your post. I think it's inexcusable," said Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.
Senator Paul and others criticized the State Department's failure to provide additional security to the Benghazi outpost, which had been requested. They also accused the department of purposefully misleading the public about what actually happened.
Clinton said, “The fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they would go kill some Americans. What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again senator."
"The answers, frankly, that you've given this morning are not satisfactory to me. The American people deserve to know answers and they certainly don't deserve false answers," said Arizona Senator John McCain.
Democrats, meanwhile, praised Clinton for her implementation of a review board's recommendations following the deadly attack. They also warned against a game of gotcha politics.
"We need to be clear eyed that there is blame to be shared right here in Congress," New York Representative Eliot Engel said.
Throughout the hearing, Secretary Clinton staunchly defended the State Department and even pushed lawmakers for more funding to better secure U.S. embassies.
"We need your help to help us pay for what we're trying to do," Clinton said.