Obama Can Now Claim Executive Privilege to Keep Rice From Testifying; Only Fox's McFarland Notes It

June 5th, 2013 10:33 PM

A Google News search on ["Susan Rice" "executive privilege"] (typed exactly as indicated between brackets) returns two stories. The main one is at Fox News, where K.T. McFarland pointed out that President Obama, now that he has appointed Susan Rice to be his National Security Adviser, can invoke executive privilege to keep her from testifying before Congress. The second is at Mediate, and notes that McFarland said the same thing to Fox News Channel anchor Martha MacCallum earlier today.

Among those who conveniently didn't catch this: Frank James at NPR, who didn't identify the executive privilege dodge in his "5 Takeaways From Obama's Susan Rice Appointment"; the Associated Press, whose three Wednesday items on Rice (here, here, and here) don't mention it, and where a search on "executive privilege" (not in quotes) returned nothing relevant; and the Politico, where a search on "Rice executive privilege" (not in quotes) also returned nothing relevant. Excerpts from McFarland's column, with harsh words about Rice's lack of qualifications, follow the jump (bold and italics are hers except final paragraph):

The real reason Obama tapped Susan Rice for national security adviser

... She will be a DISASTER.

Here's why: I spent seven years working for the most successful NSC adviser in history, Henry Kissinger.

I watched him conceive new policies, negotiate with foreign leaders, ride herd over the bureaucracy, massage the press and foreign policy intelligentsia and work behind the scenes with congressional leaders.

Susan Rice can’t do any of those things.

She has zero credibility with the media, on Capitol Hill, with the foreign policy community and foreign leaders, and is so badly tarnished by the Benghazi scandal that she walks into the job on Day One weak and wounded.

Rice might have been able to overcome the Benghazi debacle if she had other strong credentials, for example being a senior military officer like Colin Powell and Brent Scowcroft, or a respected academic like Henry Kissinger and Zbig Brzezinski. But Susan Rice is none of these.

When the spotlight was on her at the U.N. she was an ineffective ambassador who couldn't get Russia or China on board to deal with Syria or impose strict sanctions against Iran.

Not only did she fail to persuade those key members of the Security Council, she didn't know it until after the votes on sanctions were taken!

Obviously I can't prove it, but I believe in a Republican or conservative administration facing scandal, the establishment press would have thought of the executive privilege angle virtually instantly. Instead, they're either being lazy, ignorant, negligent, or a combination of all three.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.