The White House acknowledged Monday that it erred in not sending a higher-level representative to the massive rally in Paris against Islamic terrorism, after facing bipartisan criticism over the meager U.S. presence at the march — which was attended by more than 40 world leaders.
“We should have sent someone with a higher profile to be there,” Press Secretary Josh Earnest said Monday.
But he also explained that the planning for the rally began on short notice and President Obama’s personal attendance, given the security challenges, would have had a “significant impact” on the march. Earnest said they had only 36 hours to prepare, and suggested the outdoor event with large crowds posed security risks.
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