President Barack Obama on Monday mocked Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s complaint about having less ships in the U.S. Navy, saying that the country also had “fewer horses and bayonets.”
During the third 2012 presidential debate, the GOP hopeful said that he would be able to balance the budget while dramatically increasing military spending.
“Our Navy is smaller now than any time since 1917,” Romney pointed out. “The Navy said they needed 313 ships to carry out their mission, we’re not down to 285. We’re headed down to the low 200s if we go through a sequestration. That’s unacceptable to me. I want to make sure we have the ships that are required by our Navy.”
For his part, Obama pointed out that Congress had proposed the sequester and “it will not happen… The budget we’re talking about is not reducing our military spending, it’s maintaining it.”
“But I think Gov. Romney maybe hasn’t spent enough time looking at how our military works,” the president continued. “You mentioned the Navy, for example. And that we have fewer ships that we had in 1916. Well, governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets because the nature of our military has changed.”
“We have these things called aircraft carriers where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines. And so, the question is not a game of Battleship where we’re counting ships, it’s what are our capabilities?”
Watch this video from CNN, broadcast Oct. 22, 2012.