So friggen predictable.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A dozen female members of the House staunchly defended U.N. ambassador Susan Rice against Republican criticism over her remarks on the deadly Sept. 11 Libya attack, suggesting the GOP lawmakers’ comments were racist and sexist.

“It is a shame that anytime something goes wrong, they pick on women and minorities,” Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, the next chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, told reporters Friday at a Capitol Hill news conference.

Republican Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham earlier this week called Rice untrustworthy and unqualified to be the nation’s top diplomat if President Barack Obama chooses her to succeed Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. The two vowed to block any Senate confirmation if she is nominated.

The House women, a majority of them Africa-American, lashed out at McCain and Graham and demanded that they retract their criticism.

“To batter this woman because they don’t feel they have the ability to batter President Obama is something we the women are not going to stand by and watch,” said Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wis. “Their feckless and reckless speculation is unworthy of their offices as senators.”

Said Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C.: “We will not allow a brilliant public servant’s record to be mugged to cut off her consideration to be secretary of state.”