Perhaps Mitt Romney should suspend his campaign to help address the growing geopolitical crisis(es) in the Middle East?
While the Netanyahu government plays a dangerous game of chicken with the Obama Administration over Iran and as protesters in Libya give way to rockets and bombs that take out one of our Ambassadors and three staffers, the Republican Party and the Romney Campaign have decided that it is time to foreign policy the center of the campaign through bluster. This after Mitt Romney’s utter lack of foreign policy gravitas was already laid bare by his failure to even mention the war we’re fighting in his RNC acceptance speech.
Setting aside the lack of patriotism displayed in choosing any other side but the American President in a time of geopolitical crisis (whoa. Who sounds Republican, now?), there is also the matter of what exactly this crass political stunt will accomplish. Certainly, the idea is to lower a national crisis to a political advert or two. Certainly, the idea is to take Barack Obama’s foreign policy chops away from him. But is that really what is going to happen?
As I alluded to at the beginning, so much of this Republican campaign reminds me of shades of light and dark of the McCain Campaign of 2008, this latest political stunt being only the most recent. A weak candidate picks a running mate that is stronger among his base than he is, but which proves to be a fact-checking and general election nightmare. Just wait: I promise that will get worse. Then in a time of crisis – the economic meltdown for McCain, Israel/Libya for Romney – the candidate declares the stage his only to find….
John McCain twiddling his thumbs among the people whose job has been made infinitely harder by his presence. John McCain may be a bellicose asshat, but many people listen to the old War Veteran™ on issues of national security and foreign relations. He does not, however, come to mind when I think of fiscal policy. Nor should he: John McCain is in no position to offer anything in the way of experience with banking, finance, or economics, macro or otherwise. He was the last person who should have been in those meetings and it showed. His next step was to have to restart his campaign with nothing solved.
Now we find that the merry-go-round has been stopped by yet another weak candidate and once again, he chose to stop it at the moment when it becomes clear to everyone that he has no policy experience or business “helping” the president with the current set of crises.
Even our overly pliant national media cannot help but ask Mitt Romney what he would do in Barack Obama’s situation? Would he accept an Israeli attack on Iran? Would he join in? Back them up? Whistle and walk in the other direction?
Would he drop bombs on newly liberated Libya? Would he declare the revolution an Evil Empire™?
And when does he get back to running the campaign he wants? The one where he ignores foreign policy outright and sticks to cranking about our shitty economy?