In response to Mitt Romney's comments on the way he handled the attacks on both the US Embassy in Cairo and the US consulate in Benghazi, President Obama said Wednesday that Romney has a "tendency to shoot now and aim later" with his political attacks.
Obama was referring to comments Romney made Tuesday night. The GOP candidate for President called President Obama's handling of the attacks "disgraceful," the Huff Post reports.
Romney continued his attack at a campaign stop in Florida Wednesday.
"I think President Obama has a lack of clarity on foreign policy," he said according to the NY Daily News.
"it's a terrible course in America to stand in apology for our values, that instead, when our grounds are being attacked and breached, that the first response of the United States must be outrage at the breach of sovereignty of our nation," Romney added according to The WSJ. He continued by saying that "apologizing for American values is never the right course." He also offered his condolences to the families of the Americans killed in Libya.
In his statement about an "apology" for American values, Romney was referring to a statement issued by the US Embassy in Cairo Tuesday, but that statement was in reference to an anti-Islamic film that depicts the Prophet Muhammad as a sex crazed war monger and fraud. That statement, however, was made before the embassy was attacked, the Huff Post reports.
Sarah Palin and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Preibus joined Romney in his condemnation of the way Obama handled Tuesday's attacks.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani also supported Romney's comments.
"Mr. Romney looked extremely presidential, Giuliani said during a news conference at City Hall. "He seemed to have the force and the strength that sometimes is lacking in our President."
GOP leaders including House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), and Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) all issued statements on the attacks, but none of them criticized President Obama.
Some republicans have actually criticized Romney for attacking President Obama so quickly.
"I would have probably waited 12 to 24 hours," Rep Peter T. King (R-NY), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee told reporters, the LA Times reports.
Other republican officials said that Romney only hurt himself with his comments. He reacted too quickly and passionately, and did not appear presidential. Though the economy is a huge issue in this election, a lot of voters think the handling of foreign crises is extremely important, and polls have shown that voters have more faith in Obama on that issue.
Not surprisingly, Democratic leaders were also vocal about their feelings regarding Romney's attacks. The biggest difference in this case, however, is that leaders on both sides agreed that it was inappropriate for Romney to make this a political issue when in reality, the US should have remained unified in the wake of this tragedy.
"This is one of those moments where Americans must unite as Americans," said Senator John Kerry (D-MA)," the NY Daily News reports."It is exactly the wrong time to throw political punches."
Rep. Charles (D-NY) Rangel labeled Romney and his running mate, Paul Ryan, a "threat to national security."
In an interview with 60 Minutes, President Obama said Romney has a "tendency to shoot first and aim later." He said that as President, he's learned the importance of making sure that before you make bold statements such as the one Romney made, you must make sure there are facts to back them up. And that you've "thought through the ramifications before you make em."
Obama was asked if he considered Romney's comments to be irresponsible. "I'll let the American people judge that," he replied.