Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl said the U.S. embassy in Cairo's condemnation of an anti-Muslim film as bigotry amid protests was "like a judge telling the woman that got raped, you asked for it because of the way you dressed," The New York Times's Jonathan Weisman reports. Kyl was speaking at a press gaggle Wednesday, Roll Call's Meredith Shiner writes. She compared Ky's statement to the one put out by Sen. John McCain:
Jon Kyl: It's like the judge telling the woman who got raped, 'You asked for it because of the way you dressed.' OK? That's the same thing. 'Well America, you should be the ones to apologize, you should have known this would happen, you should have done — what I don't know — but it's your fault that it happened.' You know, for a member of our State Department to put out a statement like that, it had to be cleared by somebody. They don't just do that in the spur of the moment.
John McCain: All I'm worried about today is Chris Stevens, his family and those who died. There will be plenty of time to talk about who said what and who did what. But the fact is, this was a planned attack by radical extremists and it's a great tragedy. I have a great question about our situation in the region and all that, but who said what and to whom, I'm going to worry about it at another time.
Some congressional Republicans -- like McConnell and John Boehner -- have decided not to talk about the White House's response to the protests (a response Mitt Romney attacked as "disgraceful" Tuesday and Wednesday) after the death of U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other state department workers. But Kyl is not following their lead.
For the record, here is the embassy's statement that supposedly blames victims for violence. The embassy in Egypt posted this statement before the protests began and the ambassador was killed in Libya:
The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others