Albright: Romney not ready for ‘prime time’


With the third and final presidential candidate debate focusing on foreign policy and national security, the Obama campaign has a new video today making the case that Mitt Romney simply fails the Commander-in-Chief test. At nearly five minutes, it’s far too long for broadcast, but as an informational video, it’s pretty brutal.

The clip features commentary from former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), Admiral John Nathman (ret.), and former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michèle Flournoy, who collectively make the case that the Republican just doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

Of particular interest was Albright’s criticism, in large part because she didn’t hold back. “In Gov. Romney, what worries me is just a series of statements that show that he’s not ready for prime time in terms of national security,” she said, adding, “We cannot afford to have Gov. Romney and Congressman Ryan as president and vice president because of Gov. Romney’s lack of understanding of the issues that a Commander in Chief has to deal with. That is dangerous.”

That’s pretty tough stuff from the nation’s former top diplomat.

The clip also features John Kerry explaining, “Romney just says things that are not true, are irresponsible, and is willing for political expedient reasons to put at risk our foreign policy. I find it as irresponsible in a candidate as anything I have ever seen in all the years I’ve been in public life.”

Looking back over my own recent notes on Romney and foreign policy, there’s ample evidence to bolster the larger indictment. Even when the former one-term governor tries to present a vision of his own, Romney ends up not saying anything of substance – and that’s when he has the benefit of a teleprompter. In general, over the course of the last six years, Romney has struggled to even be coherent in most areas of international affairs. Abroad, he’s even been reduced to a laughingstock.

I don’t doubt that the candidate will be well prepared for tonight’s debate, and will no doubt stick to the script he’s carefully memorized, but given his record, he’ll have an enormous amount of ground to make up when it comes basic foreign policy competence.

Foreign Policy and Mitt Romney

Albright: Romney not ready for 'prime time'