We’re still learning more details about the events leading up to and surrounding the attacks by Islamic radicals on the U.S. consulate in Libya and embassy in Egypt, but the media has already agreed on one thing: Mitt Romney is the political loser.
“Unless the Romney campaign has gamed this crisis out in some manner completely invisible to the Gang of 500, his doubling down on criticism of the President for the statement coming out of Cairo is likely to be seen as one of the most craven and ill-advised tactical moves in this entire campaign,” opined Time’s Mark Halperin.
That instant conventional wisdom is a pretty fortunate turn of events for Obama, given that it diverted focus from his administration’s bungled handling of the entire situation and the failure of his broader foreign policy posture.
When President Obama came into his office, he vowed to repair the damage to the U.S. image abroad that was done by the Bush administration. In April 2009, less than three months into his presidency, he boasted to the Turkish government of having ordered the closure of Guantanamo Bay and prohibited the use of torture. “The United States is still working through some of our own darker periods in our history,” he went on, referring to the legacies of slavery, segregation and the treatment of Native Americans.