After CNN's Piers Morgan served up liberal defenses of Susan Rice that she is a "bright young woman" who was bullied by Republicans out of a secretary of state nomination, guest Rudy Giuliani scoffed at that on Thursday's Piers Morgan Tonight.
"I mean critics are saying, look, she's basically been stitched up here by a load of older guys in the Republican Party who've looked at a bright young woman and thought we're going to get you out of here," Morgan absurdly argued.
"Come on. A bright young woman wouldn't have made that statement," Giuliani retorted. "A bright young woman would have had enough independent knowledge, enough independent judgment to realize she was being fed a load of malarkey. In the words of our vice president." Giuliani was referring to Rice's infamous round on Sunday talk shows where she presented erroneous information about the Benghazi attacks.
"But she's clearly bright, Rudy. She's not – she's not a stupid woman. She's a very intelligent woman," Morgan pushed further. "Obviously not with enough information, not with enough experience to know how to critically analyze intelligence," answered Giuliani.
Earlier in the segment, Morgan offered some more cover for Rice. "She's making it pretty clear, though, that all the intelligence she received, classified or unclassified, was consistent. And therefore, we have to assume did not say this is likely to have been a al Qaeda-related attack."
Giuliani shot back that "she demonstrates she's a reader of notes and not an analyzer of events."
Morgan did admit that perhaps Rice wasn't qualified for the job, but wouldn't rule out that she was roughed up by Republicans. "She got led down a garden path and came out with thorns everywhere," he said of her meetings with GOP senators.
"And the people were saying, you know, she's just a bit inexperienced to deal with bruises like this. And what does that mean for her on the world stage? Is that a fair criticism?" he added.
A transcript of the segment, which aired on December 14 on Piers Morgan Tonight at 9:01 p.m. EST, is as follows:
PIERS MORGAN: Rudy, you've been pretty vocal about Susan Rice. Were you surprised in the end that she fell on her sword today?
RUDY GIULIANI, former Mayor of New York: Not at all. In fact I don't see that as bad news for the President. I see that kind of as good news for the President, because a battle to get her confirmed would have offered the perfect opportunity to open up this whole Benghazi thing, where no answers have yet been given.
MORGAN: You were on television with her.
GIULIANI: I was, I was.
MORGAN: On that fateful morning on –
GIULIANI: I was on Candy Crowley's show when she appeared, right here in this building. Watched it, had my little pad in front of me. When she said it – I honestly, when she said it, I uttered an expression I can't repeat on television. It starts with a B. Bull –
MORGAN: You didn't believe it?
GIULIANI: I didn't believe it because here you had an attack with rocket-propelled hand grenades, mortars, very well executed, very well prepared. Maybe I was a little more sensitive to it because it was on the anniversary of September 11. I had just come from a dinner the night before with all the people that survived September 11 with me.
And I said to myself, is this woman out of her mind? I mean, what is she talking about? A spontaneous attack? Did somebody give her that? And this idea that she just read the notes. Well, I mean, how can you be Secretary of State --
MORGAN: Well, here --
GIULIANI: – if you just – if you just read the notes. Don't you – don't you exercise some intelligence about this?
MORGAN: Here's what she says. In an op-ed piece for The Washington Post, and it's running online tonight and appears tomorrow. She said "these unclassified points" that she received "were consistent with the classified assessments I received as a senior policymaker. I have never sought in any way, shape or form to mislead the American public. To do so would run counter to my character and my life of public service. In recent weeks, new lines of attack have been raised to malign my character and my career."
The significance of that, is it, with all the General Petraeus confusion, there was an implication that perhaps she had withheld classified information for national security reasons. Which was the bit that had linked to possible al Qaeda involvement. She's making it pretty clear, though, that all the intelligence she received, classified or unclassified, was consistent. Therefore, we have to assume did not say this is likely to have been a al Qaeda-related attack.
GIULIANI: And she demonstrates she's a reader of notes and not an analyzer of events. I mean, what we want –
MORGAN: What was her job that day, Rudy, to be fair?
GIULIANI: Common sense. They gave her a story that didn't meet the smell test. A strong person says garbage, I'm not going to repeat it. I'm sorry. I have done that. I mean, this doesn't make any sense to me. Doesn't make any sense that this was a spontaneous attack. And then there was this tremendous pressure to try to say this was a spontaneous attack, try to link it to that Mohammed movie that President Obama tried to link it to for the next two weeks.
MORGAN: Do you think she lied?
GIULIANI: I don't know that. For me she's unqualified to be secretary of state because she doesn't seem to have the independent judgment to make analysis like these talking points don't make sense.
MORGAN: President Obama said after the resignation came in, "I deeply regret the unfair and misleading attacks on Susan Rice in recent weeks." See, the other thing that I've been hearing today from many people in Washington is, look, yes, the Benghazi thing was probably part of this, but actually what worsened her case really was when she went to try and have it out with Senators McCain and the others and really came off second best again.
She got led down a garden path and came out with thorns everywhere. And the people were saying, you know, she's just a bit inexperienced to deal with bruises like this. And what does that mean for her on the world stage? Is that a fair criticism?
GIULIANI: Also fair. Was she in above her head? Quite possible. Maybe she was in above her head and not really understanding how to analyze intelligence well enough. Not having enough independent knowledge to apply to it to realize this is a mistake. When I heard it, when John McCain heard it, we immediately knew it was a story that just didn't fly. Maybe because we have a lot more experience than she does.
MORGAN: I interviewed John McCain and Lindsey Graham this week who both said this. Watch this.
Sen. JOHN MCCAIN (R-Ariz.): The fact is she not only gave wrong information, but she gave the party line that, for example, that al Qaeda is decimated. Al Qaeda is not decimated. That our embassies and consulates are secure. They are not secure. So everybody -- we are all responsible for what we say. So we'll go through the process, if she is nominated, and we'll see.
Sen. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-S.C.): I think the intelligence was sanitized or created a false narrative. And I've seen this movie before.
MORGAN: Would you therefore object to her becoming secretary of state personally?
GRAHAM: Personally I don't believe she would serve the country well in that capacity.
MORGAN: Okay. Let's --
MCCAIN: We're willing to give her the nomination process, but she's got a lot to prove.
(End Video Clip)
MORGAN: I mean critics are saying, look, she's basically been stitched up here by a load of older guys in the Republican Party who've looked at a bright young woman and thought we're going to get you out of here.
GIULIANI: Come on. A bright young woman wouldn't have made that statement. A bright young woman would have had enough independent knowledge, enough independent judgment to realize she was being fed a load of malarkey. In the words of our Vice President.
MORGAN: But she's clearly bright, Rudy. She's not – she's not a stupid woman. She's a very intelligent woman.
GIULIANI: Obviously not with enough information, not with enough experience to know how to critically analyze intelligence.