I am clearly not a fan of Obama nor sympathetic to his foreign policy. That should be fairly clear to anyone who reads this blog. That said, as far as I can see, Romney recently not only took a HUGE political cheap shot at Obama in the wake of a tragedy, he also uttered a demonstrably false statement.
Romney said “The Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks”.
1. If we do a little check up on the truthfulness of the statement, we see that Hilary Clinton said ”I condemn in the strongest terms the attack on our mission in Benghazi today”. And Obama said “I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi”. While I generally am quite skeptical about things that Clinton or Obama say, I don’t read a lot of sympathy for the attackers in those words.
2. So, which statement is Mitt Romney referring to? Probably a statement from the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, which said ”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”. However, there two glaring problems:
A) The statement doesn’t even reference the attacks.
B) Why doesn’t it reference the attacks? Mainly because when it was written (6:18 AM EDT), there were no attacks. They happened 5 hours afterwards (about 11:15 AM EDT)! It was written well before the Cairo breach and the Libya incident.
I have no motive to defend Obama, but this behavior from Romney is, in my mind, quite indefensible.