Meet The Press host Chuck Todd called out ranking Benghazi Select Committee member Elijah Cummings (D., Md.) and other Democrats Sunday for using so much of their time this week with Hillary Clinton to "shield" her rather than ask real questions about Clinton's handling of the terrorist attack.
Less than 25 percent of the Democrats' questions, according to the NBC show's calculations, were actually "challenging," Todd said. The hearing was referred to as "partisan" by many mainstream media outlets, but they chose to give it that label because of the Republicans' tough questioning of Clinton, not Democrats consistently bashing the proceedings and saying "nothing new" was being learned.
"We tallied up 68 total questions to Secretary Clinton [from Democrats]," Todd said. "16 of them, at best, could we call challenging. Why did you guys choose a strategy of shield rather than a strategy of, really what Tammy Duckworth did, probably the one Democrat that did it the most, of conducting a hearing, asking questions about the security situation?"
"From the very beginning, Chuck, I said we were looking for the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth," Cummings said. "In many instances, we found ourselves having to not defend Secretary Clinton but to make sure the record was complete, and I'm glad that the public had an opportunity to see all of that. When you look at what we were asking about, they were the things that went to Benghazi, the things that we were supposed to be dealing with from the very beginning."
Cummings raised his voice on several occasions Thursday while decrying the proceedings and using his time with Clinton to praise her responses and slam Republicans for investigating her, at one point drawing applause for his remarks. Far-left website Salon called him "the real star" of the hearing.