In the 2004 presidential election, Republicans were able to make hay by portraying Democratic nominee John Kerry as weak on defense. This time around, Democrats are trying to do the same thing to Mitt Romney.
They are launching daily broadsides against his national security credentials, Politico
reports. And some top Republicans think he’s not responding strongly enough.
Democrats are particularly harping on Romney’s convention speech in which he didn’t include a shout out for our troops overseas or a mention of Afghanistan, where about 75,000 Americans are still fighting.
Retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark, a strong Obama supporter, said Monday that Romney’s approach is “unbecoming of someone who wants to become commander in chief.”
Romney is seeking to rebuild his image on defense with a speech Tuesday commemorating the Sept. 11, 2011 terrorist attacks.
Arizona Sen. John McCain, one of the GOP’s stalwarts on defense, told Politico that Romney should “go on the offensive — point out that the president never mentions victory in Afghanistan, but talks about withdrawal. That has clearly encouraged the Taliban and extremists. The level of violence is up.”
In addition, “I believe that he should have repeated what he has continually said throughout the campaign: how much we appreciate the men and women who serve,” McCain said. “But there is nothing for him to be defensive about.”
Chris LaCivita, a Republican consultant who was an adviser to the Swift Boat campaign against Kerry, told Politico, “you’re not just running for president — you’re running for commander in chief. What he needs to do now is show members of the military, their families and voters in general that he is capable of leading the country on issues other than the ones he is most comfortable talking about.”
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