GOP Presidential Candidates Weigh in on Libya

Tuesday, 23 Aug 2011 11:24 AM

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Republican presidential contenders are weighing in on the situation in Libya. Most of the top candidates, including Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.; Texas Gov. Rick Perry; and Mitt Romney, are welcoming the imminent end of Moammar Gadhafi’s reign, The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin reported in her Right Turn blog.

“I opposed U.S. military involvement in Libya, and I am hopeful that our intervention there is about to end,” Bachmann said. “I also hope the progress of events in Libya will ultimately lead to a government that honors the rule of law, respects the people of Libya and their yearning for freedom, and one that will be a good partner to the United States and the international community.”

Perry noted that the crumbling of Gadhafi’s regime is a “cause for cautious celebration. The lasting impact of events in Libya will depend on ensuring rebel factions form a unified, civil government that guarantees personal freedoms and builds a new relationship with the West where we are allies instead of adversaries.”

Romney expressed hope that Libya “will now move toward a representative form of government that supports freedom, human rights, and the rule of law.” He called on any new government to arrest and extradite Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi, the man behind the bombing of Pan Am 103, the Post reported. He was convicted on murder charges in 2001 and sentenced to life in prison but released in 2009 when suffering from cancer. He was expected to live just three months but continues to survive.

Former Utah Gov. and U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman also expressed hope that Gadhafi’s “defeat is a step toward openness, democracy and human rights for a people who greatly deserve it.”

Rick Santorum could not resist taking a shot at President Barack Obama for his handling of the situation. “This indecisive president had little to do with this triumph,” the Post quotes the former Pennsylvania senator as saying.

“The stated task from the very beginning for this administration was to determine whether the U.S. can positively influence the direction of the successor government,” Santorum said. “As we have seen in Egypt, the euphoria of toppling a dictator does not always result in more security for us and our allies in the region.”

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