Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said that those playing politics and trying to embarrass the Obama administration over the deadly September 11, 2012 attack in Benghazi, Libya are playing a dangerous game.
Reuters reports Graham made the comments on the CBS Sunday news show, Face the Nation.
"If we're playing politics with Benghazi, we'll get burned,” he said.
The events surrounding Benghazi are back in the news after emails were recently released that show White House officials seeking to provide political cover for president Obama in the days following the attack. The violence killed four U.S. officials including Ambassador Christopher Stevens.
Graham is quoted as saying in The Greenville News that the emails were meant to “protect the White House politically from the damage that could have been done from the truth coming out about Benghazi, six, seven weeks before the election.”
“They were trying to create an impression to the American people that this wasn't a broader foreign policy failure and it was totally disconnected from reality on the ground,” he said.
That’s a serious breach of trust according to Graham, whose Sunday comments seem to be an effort to prove he is more interested in getting at the truth than playing politics over the issue.
"Anyone who believes this is just about politics, go tell that to the family members ... Anyone who plays politics with Benghazi will get burned,” he said on Face the Nation, reiterating his point.
Graham has been hot on the Benghazi topic since 2012 and the recent release of the White House emails seems to have added more heat. But his energy has caused some to accuse him of being among those playing the political game.
“Some guy said this about me yesterday on the left: The only reason I cared about [Benghazi] was because I have six tea party opponents. Well, if that’s true, I’m the biggest scumbag in America," Graham said in a radio interview last week, according to the Huffington Post.
“The scumbags are the people in the White House who lied about this,” he added later.
Talk like that suggests Graham is not about to let the issue rest, no matter what he said on Sunday. Whether he gets burned or not will be up to voters. According to the Associated Press he faces six challengers in his party’s primary later this year. Bolstering his chances in the contest are his $7 million in campaign cash.