Romney reverses private position on Palestine in foreign policy address

Updated

In Mitt Romney’s speech Monday at the Virginia Military Institute, he vowed that as president he would “recommit America to the goal of a democratic, prosperous Palestinian state living side by side in peace and security with the Jewish state of Israel.” But that promise is out of step with what he said in remarks at a private fundraiser in May.

In the same leaked video in which Romney made his infamous remarks about the “47 percent,” he is heard saying, “I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway, for political purposes, committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel.” The only way forward in the crisis, he argues, is to “sort of live with it, and we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen and resolve it.”

“He almost literally said ‘kick the can down the road,’” said host Alex Wagner on Monday’s NOW with Alex Wagner.

In contrast, Romney’s Monday speech criticized President Obama for not aggressively pursuing a negotiated resolution. “On this vital issue, the President has failed, and what should be a negotiation process has devolved into a series of heated disputes at the United Nations,” he said. “In this old conflict, as in every challenge we face in the Middle East, only a new President will bring the chance to begin anew.”

Newsweek’s Megan McArdle said she was “in agreement with ‘Secret Romney.’” “We’ve now had how many presidents who have tried to solve [the Israeli-Palestinian conflict]?” she said. “Basically everyone since Carter has tried to sit down and do this. No one has managed, so I tend to assume that probably the next president—whether it’s Barack Obama again or Mitt Romney—is probably not going to do it.”

Defense, Mitt Romney and War

Romney reverses private position on Palestine in foreign policy address

Updated