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Dorian de Wind Headshot

Blasting Romney Over Bin Laden: An Ad too Far?

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Even our own Arianna Huffington objected to a recent Obama campaign ad suggesting that Mitt Romney might not have issued the order to send in the Navy SEALs to capture or kill Osama Bin Laden (OBL). She called the ad "despicable."

Standing with 9/11 mayor Rudy Giuliani by his side at a New York firehouse that lost 11 men on Sept. 11, Mitt Romney, who has attacked Obama for allegedly politicizing the OBL killing, basked while Giuliani praised his national security credentials and while Giuliani couldn't help himself but to bring up the OBL issue: "Mitt Romney, anyone else, would have made the same decision," and, saying that Obama deserves credit for ordering the raid, he added "but I wish [Obama] wouldn't use it as a source of negative campaigning. I think that's a big mistake."

Hillary Clinton's campaign used national security to attack Obama during the 2008 elections questioning then-candidate Obama's national security credentials and capabilities with the (in)famous "3 A.M. phone call" ad.

And then we had George W. Bush's "9/11-centric 2004 re-election campaign."

And so on...

Is impugning a candidate's patriotism by another candidate right? How about impugning a candidate's judgment?

Is it a good or bad sign when a political ad "provokes cries of outrage from the opposition"?

How about when a candidate's own supporters express disappointment or disgust with their candidate's political ad, à la Arianna Huffington?

According to Ross Douthat at the New York Times, "the Republican Party's foreign policy rhetoric can seem so opportunistic and confused," with "incoherence" resulting.

So, would it be "political malpractice for the president not to exploit this kind of confusion with national security attacks on his opponent"?

I am sure our readers have their own ideas on this. To see what Ross Douthat at the New York Times has to say about this, please click here.

To look at a different perspective, please click here.