On Monday, the Obama-Biden 2012 campaign unveiled its slogan: “Forward.”
Yep, that’s it. As Washington Post humor-blogger Alexandra Petri observed, “If your slogan is just one or two notches above BCC, it might not be a great slogan.”
But never mind the lack of zip to the latest and greatest in Democratic bumper-sticker philosophy, or the fact that it won’t help the arguments that President Obama isn’t a Marxist. The most disqualifying thing about “Forward” as a slogan is that this is a president who keeps looking backward. Heck, even the video unveiling “Forward” as a slogan began with a retrospective on the 2008 financial crisis; the very first words of the video titled “Forward” are “January 2008.” I’m not sure that word means what the Obama team thinks it does.
In other forward-looking news, Democrats are using today’s anniversary of the Navy SEALs’ killing of Osama bin Laden last year to revisit some comments Mitt Romney made five years ago. (Forward! Forward!)
According to this new narrative about old words, in August 2007 Romney “ruled out” a mission for U.S. troops to enter Pakistan and kill bin Laden. Never mind that Hillary Clinton, who ultimately sat in the room with Obama as the raid was carried out, and John McCain, whom Democrats derided as a trigger-happy cowboy (”Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran”), both voiced misgivings about the public pledge Obama made then to strike within Pakistan, with or without the Pakistani government’s approval.
As it happens, two days after making the remarks Democrats are now highlighting, Romney was asked during a GOP debate in Iowa to explain what he meant. Here’s how he answered (the relevant question is asked at the 3:10 mark and Romney, after waiting for Rudy Giuliani to answer, begins speaking around the 4:50 mark):
In case you didn’t watch, here’s the gist of what Romney said:
It’s wrong for a person running for the president of the United States to get on TV and say we’re going to go into your country unilaterally. Of course America always maintains our option to do whatever we think is in the best interest of America. But we don’t go out and say, “Ladies and gentleman of Germany, if ever there was a problem in your country [and] we didn’t think you were doing the right thing, we reserve the right to come in and get them out.” We don’t say those things, we keep our options quiet.
We do not go out and say to a nation which is working with us, where we’ve collaborated, and they are our friend, and we’re trying to support Musharraf and strengthen him and his nation, that instead that we intend to go in there and potentially bring out a unilateral attack.
Now, whatever one thought of Pervez Musharraf’s government in 2007, it is nigh-impossible to argue that Romney’s warning against undermining potential allies by talking publicly about carrying out attacks on their soil is the same thing as saying “he wouldn’t do such a thing.”
As I wrote last year, Obama deserves credit for ordering the raid and seeing that the team conducting it had the necessary support and resources. But he has officially strayed from “not spiking the ball” — at the very least, he’s moved on to “the other guy wouldn’t have had a ball to spike.”
(H/t: Hot Air)
– By Kyle Wingfield