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Mitt Romney’s remarks (link to video, including questions).

I personally would have been a good deal more cutting, but then I personally would never make it past the tryouts for the auditions for the contest to be President of the United States. The man understands the problem, which is not “Free speech is provocative,” and never mind what those racists in the progressive antiwar movement think. Here’s the statement itself:

“Americans woke up this morning with tragic news and felt heavy hearts as they considered that individuals who have served in our diplomatic corps were brutally murdered across the world. This attack on American individuals and embassies is outrageous, it’s disgusting. It breaks the hearts of all of us who think of these people who have served, during their lives, the cause of freedom, and justice and honor. We mourn their loss and join together in prayer that the spirit of the Almighty might comfort the families of those who have been so brutally slain.

“Four diplomats lost their life, including the U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, in the attack on our embassy at Benghazi, Libya. And, of course, with these words, I extend my condolences to the grieving loved ones, who have left behind, as a result of these who have lost their lives in the service of our nation, and I know that the people across America are grateful for their service and we mourn their sacrifice.

“America will not tolerate attacks against our citizens and against our embassies. We will defend also our constitutional rights of speech and assembly and religion. We have confidence in our cause in America. We respect our Constitution. We stand for the principles our Constitution protects. We encourage other nations to understand and respect the principles of our Constitution because we recognize that these principles are the ultimate source of freedom for individuals around the world.

“I also believe the Administration was wrong to stand by a statement sympathizing with those who had breached our embassy in Egypt instead of condemning their actions. It’s never too early for the United States Government to condemn attacks on Americans, and to defend our values. The White House distanced itself last night from the statement, saying it wasn’t ‘cleared by Washington.’ That reflects the mixed signals they’re sending to the world.

“The attacks in Libya and Egypt underscore that the world remains a dangerous place and that American leadership is still sorely needed. In the face of this violence, America cannot shrink from the responsibility to lead. American leadership is necessary to ensure that events in the region don’t spin out of control. We cannot hesitate to use our influence in the region to support those who share our values and our interests. Over the last several years, we have stood witness to an Arab Spring that presents an opportunity for a more peaceful and prosperous region, but also poses the potential for peril, if the forces of extremism and violence are allowed to control the course of events.

“We must strive to ensure that the Arab Spring does not become an Arab Winter.”

And let me give you an idea of what kind of questions our press thought were smart to ask Romney:

REPORTER: Governor, some people have said that you jumped the gun a little in putting that statement out last night, and you should have waited until more details were available. Do you regret having that statement come out so early before we learned about all the things that were happening?

ROMNEY: I don’t think we ever hesitate when we see something which is a violation of our principles. We express immediately when we feel that the president and his administration have done something which is inconsistent with the principles of America. Simply put: having an embassy which has been breached, and has protestors on its grounds having violated the sovereignty of the United States? Having the embassy reiterate a statement effectively apologizing for the right of free speech is not the right course for an administration.

Yeah, they were pretty much all like that. I’d compare them to the questions that President Obama answered, except that he didn’t answer any: instead, Obama gave a brief statement, then ran and hid in the Oval Office.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

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