LIMA, Peru (AP)—U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton repeated on Tuesday her statement taking sole responsibility for security at all of America's diplomatic missions, an attempt to clear a political obstacle for her boss, President Barack Obama ahead of his second debate with Republican Mitt Romney.
"I take responsibility," Clinton said in a written statement. "I'm in charge of the State Department's 60,000-plus people all over the world (at) 275 posts."
She would not answer questions on her statement.
With only weeks before the presidential election, outrage has crystallized around Vice President Joe Biden's claim in last week's debate with Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan that "we weren't told" about requests for extra security at the consulate where assailants killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.
Congressional hearings revealed that the State Department was aware of, and rejected, several requests for increased security in Benghazi. Spokesmen for both the State Department and the White House took pains Friday to make clear that Biden's "we" referred to the White House, where such requests would not go.
Clinton backed up Biden's assertion. "The president and the vice president certainly wouldn't be knowledgeable about specific decisions that are made by security professionals," she said Monday.