MANCHESTER, N.H. — U.S. involvement in Afghanistan resurfaced as an issue on the campaign trail Monday, with both President Barack Obama and presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney slamming their opponent’s approach to withdrawal. At a town hall event here at St. Anselm College, Romney slammed Obama for not talking about Afghanistan on more frequent basis.
“I expect the president of the United States to address the nation on a regular basis,” Romney said.
The Obama campaign fired back, slamming Romney for attacking the President without offering voters specifics on his own plan for withdrawal.
Here’s the statement from spokeswoman Lis Smith (emphasis added):
“Asked in New Hampshire about his plan to bring our troops home from Afghanistan, Mitt Romney’s response was that he’d address the American public more often if elected. That’s simply not enough from someone running to be Commander-in-Chief. The truth is that Romney has refused to put forth a plan for what he would do in Afghanistan. If he does have some secret plan, he owes it to our men and women in uniform to tell them. The President has repeatedly outlined a specific plan for how we are going to bring our troops home responsibly and end the war by the end of 2014, including during a trip he made to Afghanistan in May. That’s what the American people deserve in their Commander-in-Chief.”
When asked by a veteran at the town hall Monday what he planned to do “about this damned mess in Afghanistan,” Romney limited his policy details to saying that he would fight to bring troops home “as soon as possible.”
“I will do everything in my power to transition from our military to their military as soon as possible, bring our men and women home and do so in a way consistent with our mission,” Romney said, “which is to keep Afghanistan from being overrun by a new entity that would allow Afghanistan to be a launching point for terror again like it was on 9/11.”
Romney pledged, though, that he would “address the American people about these issues.”
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