Romney: Iran Is 'Greatest Threat'

Sunday, 09 Sep 2012 11:17 AM

By Amy Woods

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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said “the greatest threat that America faces and the world faces” is a nuclear Iran.

“The president has not drawn us further away from a nuclear Iran,” Romney said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” In fact, Iran is closer to having a weapon, closer to having nuclear capability, than when he took office.”

In addition to calling a nuclear Iran American’s greatest threat, the former Massachusetts governor called it President Barack Obama’s “greatest failure” in foreign policy.

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“I will have a very different approach with regards to Iran,” Romney said, specifying “crippling sanctions that should have been put in place long ago.”

“I don’t think we live with a nuclear Iran,” he said. “I think we make it very clear that a nuclear Iran is unacceptable to the United States of America, to civilized l nations throughout the world, and that we will maintain every option that’s available to us to keep that from happening.”

During the interview with host David Gregory, Romney also talked about healthcare and said he likes parts of Obamacare. Although he promised early in his campaign to repeal Obama's healthcare overhaul, he said he would keep several important parts of it.

“Of course, there are a number of things that I like in healthcare reform that I'm going to put in place," Romney said. ''One is to make sure that those with pre-existing conditions can get coverage."

Romney also said he would allow young adults to keep their coverage under their parents' health insurance.

Those provisions have been two of the more popular parts of Obama's Affordable Care Act.

"I say we're going to replace Obamacare. And I'm replacing it with my own plan," Romney said. "And even in Massachusetts when I was governor, our plan there deals with pre-existing conditions and with young people."

In the interview, Romney also said he would offset his proposed tax cuts by closing loopholes for high income taxpayers.

"We're not going to have high-income people pay less of the tax burden than they pay today. That's not what's going to happen," he said.

When pressed, however, Romney declined to provide an example of a loophole he would close.

"I can tell you that people at the high end, high-income taxpayers, are going to have fewer deductions and exemptions. Those numbers are going to come down. Otherwise they'd get a tax break. And I want to make sure people understand, despite what the Democrats said at their convention, I am not reducing taxes on high-income taxpayers," Romney said.

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Romney defended his decision to say nothing about the war in Afghanistan or the U.S. troops serving there during his acceptance speech last month at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.

He said that he'd been to Afghanistan and the troops "know of my commitment."

"I have some differences on policy with the president. I happen to think those are more important than what word I mention in each speech," he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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