PM NOTE: State Dept Staffers Resign Over Benghazi, Obama Guilt Trips GOP, Jake Tapper Asks, ‘Where Have You Been?’ on Gun Control

Dec 19, 2012 7:08pm

Heads Roll After Benghazi Report – A scathing report said that senior officials in the Diplomatic Security and Near East Affairs bureaus displayed management deficiencies that left security for the consulate, “inadequate for Benghazi and grossly inadequate to deal with the attack that took place.” (Martha Raddatz and Dana Hughes)   http://abcn.ws/WpyBEH

Obama Invokes Newtown on Fiscal Cliff Deal – At a midday news conference, President Obama invoked Republicans’ sense of guilt, saying last week’s tragic shooting in Newtown, Conn., should have given lawmakers “a sense of perspective about what’s important.” House Speaker John Boehner responded by saying the president needs to “get serious.” http://abcn.ws/T84Uat

Though much of the question-and-answer section revolved around the fiscal cliff negotiations, the press conference was originally scheduled to announce Obama has chosen Vice President Joe Biden to form a plan to stop gun violence in a post-Newtown America, a step that shows the gun control debate taking on new urgency in Washington. (Devin Dwyer) http://abcn.ws/WpOQl0

Where Were You? ABC News’ Jake Tapper got the last question to Obama. He asked him where he’d been over the last four years on gun violence. Watch Obama’s impassioned response here: http://abcn.ws/Uddhne

Tapper later told the Washington Post he was inspired to ask that question by memories of covering Columbine and thoughts of the families of gun violence victims.

House Democrats Urge Congress to Get Tough on Guns – House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said the families of those who died in Newtown don’t need words to console them now – they need Congress to act. (John Parkinson) http://abcn.ws/WpRBTs

Aurora Survivor Calls Biden Gun Initiative ‘Really Encouraging’ – Stephen Barton – a survivor of the summer’s shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. – lives near Newtown, Conn. He’s working with Mayors Against Illegal Guns to find solutions to end gun violence. (Sarah Parnass) http://abcn.ws/Wpx5Cu

Brady Campaign Launches PSAs With Shooting Victims’ Family Members – http://abcn.ws/WpRVSc

Obama Twitter Lightens the Mood - Perhaps sensing the dark tone of discussions on the Hill, Obama officials tweeted a photo of the president tangled in the web of a wee Spiderman, to the Internet’s delight. (Colleen Curry)  http://abcn.ws/WpdNNs

President Obama Urges GOP to ‘Take the Deal’ and Avoid the Fiscal Cliffhttp://abcn.ws/Ym7gas

Mary Bruce reported the White House issued a formal veto threat to Boehner’s “Plan B” this afternoon.

Rep. Huelskamp: If I Voted for Boehner’s Plan, I’d Deserve a Primary – The Republican from Kansas told ABC News’ Chris Good that representatives who signed Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge and vote for Boehner’s plan deserve to be challenged in the 2014 elections. http://abcn.ws/VQE5FX

Senators Watch ‘Lincoln’ - Amid talk of saving the country from gun violence and diving over the fiscal cliff, senators found time tonight to watch the movie “Lincoln” with director Steven Spielberg and actor Daniel Day-Lewis on Capitol Hill. (Sunlen Miller) http://abcn.ws/WpS9Zn

Conservative Trailblazer Robert Bork Dies - http://abcn.ws/V71lmW

First Female President Elected in South Korea – http://abcn.ws/UcZe0V

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