The Republican National Committee’s new ad opens with chaos in the streets of Libya, gunfire and headlines about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi that killed the U.S. ambassador, Chris Stevens.
”I said even at the time, this is going to be a rocky path,” President Barack Obama is shown saying, as he spoke of problems in the Middle East during an interview aired by CBS’s “60 Minutes” Sunday night. “There are going to be bumps in the road.”
This is not bumps in the road, the screen-messaging of the RNC ad closes with. “This is a crisis… of leadership.”
The party’s ad reinforces the quick reaction that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney made to Obama’s televised remarks.
“These are not bumps in the road; these are human lives,” Romney told voters in Pueblo, Colorado, yesterday. “This is time for a president who will shape events in the Middle East.”
“I was pretty certain, and continue to be pretty certain, that there are going to be bumps in the road because, in a lot of these places the one organizing principle has been Islam,” Obama said in the “60 Minutes” interview. “There are strains of extremism and anti-Americanism and anti-Western sentiments” that “can be tapped into by demagogues,” the president said, adding that, “I do think that over the long term we are more likely to get a Middle East and North Africa that is more peaceful, more prosperous and more aligned with our interests.”
For whatever the merits of the debate over the Arab Spring and the United States’ handling of the situation, the discussion of foreign policy in the final weeks of an election that centers squarely on the American economy could be another detour for Romney, trailing in swing-state polling. Romney also was taped at a May 17 fundraiser in Florida as saying that he sees no hope for peace between Israelis and Palestinians.