A leading House Republican criticized the Obama administration Sunday for running ads in Pakistan denouncing the anti-Islamic film that allegedly sparked violent and deadly protests across the Middle East and North Africa, calling the roughly $70,000 project a â€śhorrible idea.â€ť
â€śI think it was a horrible idea,â€ť said Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. â€śIt gave credibility and it gave a permission slip to Al Qaeda, to Pakistani officials.â€ť
The ad features President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton denouncing the 14-minute Internet film trailer â€śThe Innocence of Muslims,â€ť purportedly by South California filmmaker Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.
The State Department reportedly paid seven Pakistani stations to run the ad.
â€śI donâ€™t know who gave them the advice,â€ť Rogers said on CNNâ€™s â€śState of the Union.â€ť â€śIt was horrible advice. It has exacerbated the situation.â€ť
The administration has said the attacks that began Sept. 11 and spread to more than 20 countries were in response to the film and not directed at the U.S. government.