Commentary by Tom Manoff, Washington Public Radio
W a s h i n g t o n P u b l i c R a d i o
I’m not in the tank for Obama. Not by a longshot. I have a nasty bone to pick with the charismatic Chicagoan (his corporate sell-out to drug companies by his role in defeating the Dorgan Amendment.) He gets no pass from me on that backroom deal.
But Republican candidate George Romney’s words today (he criticized Obama for supposedly being soft on Libya, an untruth itself when considered in the arena of global realities) strikes me as a political crude oil- slick. Is this Romney fellow an American or just another political opportunist whose possible election is more important than supporting the American President in time of national crisis?
And what are Romney’s qualifications to criticize Obama over the president’s ability to fight terrorism ? Romney saying that Obama is somehow soft as a millitary leader comes across as rather silly. Romney’s military experience is non-existent. Before college he got a military differement as a Mormon missionary. Later his draft number was too high to get him into the service. He has absolutely no experience as a military commander. Zero.
Compare Romney with Obama: Since becoming President, Obama has been a military leader. It is he who gives the “yea” or “nea” on those life-or-death missle strikes. Agree with him or not, it takes a hard nosed man or woman to make decisions which may kill innocents.
Please take a breath at this moment and take score. It is a fact that George Romney has never made a military decision. It is a fact that President Obama has made many decisions, and some of them have been right on the mark.
Does George Romney strike you as a military type ? Can you see him in a war room giving the go for a missle strike ? Perhaps you can. But the facts state that it is Obama who has the military record, not Romney. These are facts, so, if you have a mind to argue, argue with the facts not the messenger.
And now for some thoughts about which we can argue. Not facts, but impressions about Romney which have been made more real by his silly comments today: Romney is a “suit,” a business man with a portfolio, not a man who has ever made life and death decisions.
Romney – he of the pressed suit and tidy tax returns – doesn’t strike me as a successful warrior. His mistakes today suggest that he ain’t much of a politician either.
When it comes to what “suits” a successful military man (or woman,) Romney’s suit comes up the joker. President Obama is laying down aces, straight down the collective throats of America’s enemies.
NOTE: There are two warships moving to the coast of Libya. Last I checked, they didn’t get their orders from a board of directors. Obama is at the helm of those warships. So, Romney, best keep your suit clean and your mouth buttoned.