Pat Buchanan is accusing President Barack Obama of exploiting the killing of Osama bin Laden for “crass” political purposes, and called his surprise trip to Afghanistan on the anniversary of the al-Qaida leader’s death “an end-zone dance.”
“What the president of the United States just did was take a 14,000 mile round trip to Afghanistan basically to put a partisan gloss on what was a national victory, and to do something of an end zone dance to revive the issue of the heroism of SEAL Team Six and use it for partisan advantage,” the conservative columnist and author told Fox News’s Sean Hannity Wednesday night.
“It was crass, it was exploited, and I think it’s going to backfire because it was so transparent,” he said.
Buchanan said the “greatest asset” a president has is the Oval Office and to use it as a political tool in his re-election bid demeans the office and the man.
“I think this is where the president’s hurting himself,” Buchanan said, calling the tracking down and killing of the terrorist who instigated the September 11 attacks “an American event” that should be above partisan politics.
“What we are seeing, and it suggests a real desperation in the campaign, is an effort to take an event, which is a very positive event for all Americans, and to say, ‘this was me, this was [Democrats],” Buchanan said.
Buchanan, who sought the presidency himself in 1992 and 1996, also called it a mistake for the Obama campaign to tout the auto bailouts as a domestic policy and economic success that presumed Republican nominee Mitt Romney opposed.
“Why . . . turn this into an us vs. Mitt thing?” Buchanan said, adding, “This is so stupid politically It was a gutsy call. Why don’t you just stand back and let people say what you did?”
Buchanan said he thinks Romney now has “a far better chance than folks believe” because people are “coming around to the idea that Barack Obama is not necessarily a winner.”
“And one of the reasons is the panicked campaign that was revealed in what he did in Afghanistan,” Buchanan added.
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