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Rice withdraws from Secretary of State consideration

For months, Rice has been under fire for her handling of public relations following the Sept. 11 attacks on a U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya that left four Americans dead.

Amid ongoing controversy, U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice has formally withdrawn her candidacy for nomination to Secretary of State, NBC reported this afternoon. Rice announced her plans to withdraw in a letter to President Barack Obama that was obtained by the network.

For months, Rice has been under fire for her handling of public relations following the Sept. 11 attacks on a U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya that left four Americans dead. Rice made the rounds on Sunday morning news talk shows following the tragedy and attributed the violence to a spontaneous demonstration against an anti-Muslim video, though evidence would later prove it was a planned terrorist attack.

Republicans say Rice knew she was delivering misinformation to the American people; Democrats say she was sticking to approved talking points.

Though a number of senators declared that they would oppose a Rice nomination, the White House has publicly backed Rice at every turn.

“If they want to go after somebody, they should go after me,” Obama told the press shortly after his reelection.

In Rice’s letter, she told Obama that the political trade-off was too great to continue to pursue the Secretary of State nomination.

“If nominated, I am now convinced that the confirmation process would be lengthy, disruptive and costly ‚?? to you and to our most pressing national and international priorities,” she wrote.

Rice’s self-removal from the field clears the way for the possible nomination of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) to head the State Department. While Kerry, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is hardly beloved by conservatives, the promotion would leave his Massachusetts Senate seat vacant and potentially allow state Republicans a chance to re-take the seat.

None of this means Rice will go un-promoted though; Obama is rumored to be considering the ambassador for the position of National Security Adviser, which would keep her close to the presidency and bypass the Senate confirmation process entirely.

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Written By

Hope Hodge first covered military issues for the Daily News of Jacksonville, N.C., where her beat included the sprawling Marine Corps base, Camp Lejeune. During her two years at the paper, she received investigative reporting awards for exposing a former Marine who was using faked military awards to embezzle disability pay from the government and for breaking news about the popularity of the designer drug Spice in the ranks. Her work has also appeared in The American Spectator, New York Sun, WORLD Magazine, and The Washington Post. Hodge was born near Boston, Mass., where she grew up as a lover of Revolutionary War history and fall foliage. She also discovered a love of politics and policy as a grassroots volunteer and activist on Beacon Hill. She graduated in 2009 with a degree in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics from The King's College in New York City, where she served as editor-in-chief of her school newspaper and worked as a teaching assistant when not freelancing or using student discounts to see Broadway shows. Hope‚??s email is HHodge@eaglepub.com

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