Presumptive Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s campaign is accusing President Barack Obama of dividing the country when his campaign talks about killing terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden.
In a new web advertisement, President Bill Clinton says that Obama chose the “more honorable path” by ordering the 2011 attack that resulted in the death of bin Laden.
“Look, he knew what would happen,” Clinton explains. “Suppose the Navy Seals had gone in there and it hadn’t been bin Laden. Suppose they had been captured or killed. The downside would have been horrible for him, but he reasoned I cannot in good conscience do nothing.”
The ad goes on to ask if Romney would have made the same decision.
Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul on Friday pushed back by saying the ad was being used to “divide” the country.
“The killing of Osama bin Laden was a momentous day for all Americans and the world, and Governor Romney congratulated the military, our intelligence agencies, and the President,” Saul said in a statement.
“It’s now sad to see the Obama campaign seek to use an event that unified our country to once again divide us, in order to try to distract voters’ attention from the failures of his administration.”
In a major speech on Wednesday, Vice President Joe Biden recalled that Obama had “made one of the most courageous decisions” he had ever seen a president make by ordering the strike on Osama bin Laden.
“This guy has a got a backbone like a ramrod,” the vice president said. “For real. For real. On this gut issue, we know what President Obama did. We can’t say for certain what Governor Romney would have done.”
“Thanks to President Obama, bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive,” Biden continued. “You have to ask yourself had Governor Romney been president, could he have used the same slogan in reverse?”
The Associated Press quoted Romney in 2007 as saying that there would be only “a very insignificant increase in safety” if bin Laden were killed.
“It’s not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person,” Romney reportedly said.
But speaking to Fox News late last year, Romney insisted that “any president” would have given the order to take out the 9/11 mastermind.
“We’re delighted that he gave the order to take out Osama bin Laden,” the former Massachusetts governor told host Chris Wallace. “Any president would have done that, but this one did, and that’s a good thing. I’m not going to say everything he’s done is wrong.”
Watch this video from BarackObama.com, broadcast April 27, 2012.
(h/t: Talking Points Memo)