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President Obama and American Exceptionalism

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BARACK OBAMA
AP

The mastermind of the 9/11 attack, Osama bin Laden, is rotting at the bottom of the Arabian Sea. How's that for change you can believe in?

Before I discuss the president and American exceptionalism, we've got to thank those Navy Seals and those military guys that tirelessly give their all for the United States of America.

President Barack Obama has shown an exceptional amount of courage over the last 48 hours. He has undoubtedly proven that he could take that "3:00 a.m. call." And more importantly, despite all of the division in this country that we have politically, we are now beginning to unite a little bit. This may be a big turning point for this nation.

President Obama acted decisively. There wasn't any jingoism going on, no cowboy talk, just a lot of dignity and class.

This is the guy Republicans said didn't have the experience because he never served in the military before. Well, President Obama has had to make some pretty heavy decisions as of late and he has gotten the number one terrorist on the face of the Earth, the man that was responsible for killing some 3,000 Americans and, of course, this is I guess you could say the "mission accomplished" banner that we should be putting up.

The FBI's most wanted fugitive, Osama bin Laden, camped out in this nice million-dollar compound. And on actionable intelligence just like the president said he was going to do, he acted and got it done.

And we need to credit the troops. You know how we hear so much about the troops and how they just have got to have our support? And we do give them the support. Absolutely.

I believe that we have won. How about that spirit?

Do you think those folks at the Naval Academy, the way they were feeling when word came out that we had Bin Laden -- do you feel that they love the president of the United States? Do you think they pay attention to the political rhetoric that's going on, or are they focused on being great servants to this country in the military? That's what they're all about.

This was a huge moment for our military. This was a uniting moment for this country.

And most people put aside our political divisions. I have great respect for the way the president has done this, because some of the details that are coming out are so interesting. This guy that didn't have any military experience, had to make some pretty tough calls.

The president was offered several options here. He could have bombed the target. He didn't want to do that because that of course would have ruined all of the evidence and, of course, we've got to have proof that Osama bin Laden is dead. It would have killed a lot of innocent people, and this president was very concerned about that.

He could have joined in and done a joint operation with the Pakistanis. But the way things have been going, you know what? He just didn't want to outsource this one.

He turned to those great kids that you saw. He turned to those kinds of Americans to say, you know what? You got to do this job.

This is the time. This is the moment. This is the chance. And we're going to move forward and do it -- just like we said we were going to do it as Americans.

This is leadership at its finest hour.

I believe that this is an end of a chapter and we've all been reminded that we've got to keep up this fight and keep going.

President Obama has proved to the world he not only understands, but exemplifies the pure definition of American exceptionalism.