even as the benghazi gasbags crumple under their own morbidly obese weight, from the outset it was never possible to take republicans seriously on it. first, the point man just wants to throw his weight around in front of the cameras one last time before the next senate takes it away from him. second, four years ago the GOP proudly and loudly proclaimed that their number one priority was to make obama a one-term president. to win 2012 obama needed to fail. at everything. thus began a nonstop and ultimately futile campaign of single-minded obstruction, condemnation and sabotage of every act, nomination and proposal obama has attempted to make. that is now historical fact. the GOP came to raze him, then to bury him. in all of four years obama wrested from them but a single moment of respite — after disclosing the death of bin laden, where even the most rabid partisans could find no safe purchase from which to continue their attacks.
when a party adopts a nakedly self-serving program of categorical obstruction, they also loudly announce that the merits of any particular issue do. not. matter. one. whit. quite foolishly they surrendered all credibility on anything and everything they object to, since they were planning to object anyway. everything becomes a "crisis" and the critics become the old men that cried wolf. so despite their loud moral opprobrium at the deaths of four americans, does anyone believe, had benghazi never happened, that the GOP would not now be organizing some kind of "crucial" hearings about some other administration "scandal"? does anyone believe, had rice's name never been floated, that the GOP would not now be obstructing this nomination, as they have every other?