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article imageOp-Ed: War of words over bin Laden's death cheapens race for Presidency

By Marcus Hondro     May 1, 2012 in Politics
A war of words between U.S. President Barack Obama and the GOP's presumptive nominee Mitt Romney is getting silly. Obama said Romney wouldn't have ordered the raid which killed Osama bin Laden; Romney then countered with a childish remark.
It is hardly the high road and it cheapens both of them, and the office of the Presidency, to quibble over a killing. Yes, Osama Bin Laden was an enemy and he got his just desserts, we get that, but to argue about who gets credit for killing him, who might have done a better job of killing him, or who wouldn't have killed him at all is undignified, and pathetic.
Romney quote on bin Laden
The Democrats began it by using an old quote of Romney's from 2007 and claimed it meant that Romney would not have ordered the strike on the compound in Pakistan that lead to bin Laden's death a year ago. Here's what Romney said five years ago: “It’s not worth moving heaven and earth and spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person." While it was the wrong thing to tell America it does not mean that he would not have ordered the raid.
Romney fired back, on April 30, by saying that anyone would have ordered the raid. In an attempt to further diminish Obama's decision, a decision that went against some military advisers who felt it too risky, Romney added that “even Jimmy Carter would have given that order." Carter is a Democrat criticized for being soft on national security issues while in the White House.
Obama countered and on it goes.
These two men, and their parties, are stumbling verbally over one another to get the most kudos for having the best trigger finger in order to exploit an electorate's fear. It seems obvious each of them would be capable of taking out someone who so cruelly took the lives of so many and all this posturing does is take away time from debating meaningful issues. They've reduced the election to schoolyard boasting, with a dutiful media following and recording every bray.
U.S. Election: Braggarts and Gunfighters
This is not about lamenting the fact bin Laden may not have been given due process - after all, he didn't give thousands of Americans and other nationals due process - it's about lamenting an election process that's being reduced to buzzards fighting over a carcass. And about feeling sorry for a country that seems to need their politicians to go there.
The Democrats are following in the footsteps of a long held Republican tradition of catering to fear, of talking jingoistic and reducing debate to taunts and boasts. It has cheapened the party and brought them down to the level of the GOP, to the level of Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich. And Obama and Romney both have cheapened the office of the Presidency.
Is there anyone left to take the high road?
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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