Gibbs: Ad saying Romney wouldn’t have ordered bin Laden raid ‘not over the line’

Top Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs defended a new ad which argues Mitt Romney would not have launched the raid to capture Osama bin Laden last year.

Gibbs, said the advertisement featuring President Bill Clinton and questioning whether Romney would have ordered the mission to kill bin Laden, one year after the raid, was “not over the line.”

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“Look, just a few years ago. President Obama, then a candidate said in a speech that if we had actionable intelligence of a high value target in Pakistan we’d go in and get that high value target,” said Gibbs on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. “Mitt Romney said that was foolish, he wouldn’t do such a thing. They wouldn’t move heaven and earth to get Osama bin Laden.”

The ad in question uses footage of from an interview with Clinton for the 17-minute pro-Obama film “The Road We’ve Traveled.” “[Obama] took the harder, and the more honorable path,” Clinton says in the featured clip, referring to the decision to authorize the strike in Pakistan to capture bin Laden.. "He had to decide. And that's what you hire the president to do. You hire the president to make the calls when no one else can do it."


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"The commander-in-chief gets one chance to make the right decision," reads onscreen text in the video. "What path would Mitt Romney have taken?"

“Barack Obama as our commander-in-chief asked our intelligence community to find him, brought actionable intelligence, directed the brave men and women in our military to go in and kill Osama bin Laden, which is exactly what they did under extraordinary circumstances and Osama bin Laden no longer walks on this planet today because of that brave decision and the brave decisions of men and women in our military,” said Gibbs on Sunday.

“Quite frankly Mitt Romney said it was a foolish thing to do a few years ago and look there’s a difference in the roles they would play as commander in chief and I certainly think that’s fair game. “


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Gibbs was asked by host David Gregory if the president believed that Romney would not have authorized the bin Laden mission had he access to the same intelligence.

“I don’t think it’s clear that he would,” said Gibbs of Romney. “Again, he criticized Barack Obama a few years ago, when Barack Obama said if we had actionable intelligence about a high value target and let’s be clear: Nobody was bigger, nobody was a more high value target than Osama bin Laden.”

“Is there any doubt that if the mission went poorly as Bill Clinton said that Mitt Romney wouldn’t be out there attacking the president for it,” he continued. “Look, maybe the comments that he made a few years ago he admits are wrong or he’s flip-flopped on yet another issue. “

“The president made a clear, brave decision, empowered the remarkable men and women in our military to go get him and kill Osama bin Laden.”


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