I try to watch ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos. GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney was a guest on June 14th and he caught my attention with this subtle exchange with the host concerning a nuclear Iran. As a follow-up to a recent post about context, I decided to check the necessary transcripts.
ROMNEY: And one aspect of what the president said may have been well received in Iran, but I think it was poorly received in Israel and around the world. And that’s when — well, actually, he made a 180-degree flip from what he had said during the campaign. During the campaign, when he spoke to AIPAC, he said he would do everything in his power to keep Iran from having a nuclear weapon. And then he went to Cairo and said that no single nation should have the ability to deny another nation the right to have a nuclear weapon. That is an 180-degree flip of a dangerous nature. I’m sure it was welcome in many streets in the Arab world and in the world that’s most — include the Persian world, Iran as well. But that’s not right for America. That’s not right for world security.
STEPHANOPOULOS: I believe the administration has said that they believe that Iran could have the right to nuclear power with appropriate safeguards, but not a nuclear weapon.
ROMNEY: We don’t have any question about nuclear power, and that was not the statement that the president made that was most offensive. It was his statement that no single nation should have the ability to deny another nation the right to nuclear weaponry.
President Obama in Cairo
OBAMA: It will be hard to overcome decades of mistrust, but we will proceed with courage, rectitude and resolve. There will be many issues to discuss between our two countries, and we are willing to move forward without preconditions on the basis of mutual respect. But it is clear to all concerned that when it comes to nuclear weapons, we have reached a decisive point. This is not simply about America’s interests. It is about preventing a nuclear arms race in the Middle East that could lead this region and the world down a hugely dangerous path.
I understand those who protest that some countries have weapons that others do not. No single nation should pick and choose which nations hold nuclear weapons. That is why I strongly reaffirmed America’s commitment to seek a world in which no nations hold nuclear weapons. And any nation – including Iran – should have the right to access peaceful nuclear power if it complies with its responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That commitment is at the core of the Treaty, and it must be kept for all who fully abide by it. And I am hopeful that all countries in the region can share in this goal.
A Frank Angle
This is a good example of how people take words out of context in order to apply meaning for their own benefit. Governor, as you continue to keep your name in the forefront for 2012, you must do much better than that to get not only my vote, but the vote of those who decide elections – independent moderates. Then again, maybe you don’t want our vote.