Third presidential debate transcript: Mitt Romney on Libya and the changing landscape in the Middle East

Transcribed and edited by Jenny Jiang

Excerpts from the third and final presidential debate at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida on Oct. 22, 2012

Transcript of Gov. Mitt Romney’s remarks on Libya and the changing landscape in the Middle East:

Moderator Bob Schieffer:

The first segment is the challenge of a changing Middle East and the new face of terrorism…

The first question concerns Libya. The controversy over what happened there continues. Four Americans are dead, including an American Ambassador. Questions remain of what happened, what caused it, was it spontaneous, was it an intelligence failure, was it a policy failure, was there an attempt to mislead people about what really happened.

Gov. Romney, you’ve said that this was an example of an American policy in the Middle East that is unraveling before our very eyes. I’d like to hear each of you give your thoughts on that.

Gov. Mitt Romney: 

This is obviously an area of great concern to the entire world and to America in particular, which is to see a complete change in the structure and the environment of the Middle East. With the Arab Spring came a great deal of hope that there would be a change toward more moderation, an opportunity for greater participation on the part of women in public life and in the economic life of the Middle East.

But instead we have seen in nation after nation a number of disturbing events.

Of course we see in Syria 30,000 civilians having been killed by the military there.

We see in Libya an attack apparently by – I think we know now – by terrorists of some kind against our people there – 4 people dead. Our hearts and minds go to them.

Mali have been taken over – the northern part of Mali – by Al Qaeda-type individuals.

We have in Egypt a Muslim Brotherhood President.

So what we’re seeing is a pretty dramatic reversal in the kind of hopes we have for that region.

Of course, the greatest threat of all is Iran – 4 years closer to a nuclear weapon.

And we’re going to have to recognize that we do as the President’s done. I congratulate him on taking out Osama bin Laden and going after the leadership of Al Qaeda. But we can’t kill our way out of this mess.

We’re going to have to put in place a very comprehensive and robust strategy to help the world of Islam and other parts of this world reject this radical violent extremism, which is certainly not on the run, is certainly not hiding. This is a group that is now involved in 10 or 12 countries and it presents an enormous threat to our friends, to the world, to America long-term. And we must have a comprehensive strategy to help reject this kind of extremism.

###

Learn More:

14 Comments on “Third presidential debate transcript: Mitt Romney on Libya and the changing landscape in the Middle East

  1. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: Mitt Romney on increasing military spending | What The Folly?!

  2. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on Libya and the changing landscape in the Middle East | What The Folly?!

  3. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: Obama and Romney's exchange on Syria | What The Folly?!

  4. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: Gov. Mitt Romney's remarks on Syria | What The Folly?!

  5. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama's remarks on the Egyptian revolution | What The Folly?!

  6. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on Israel & Iran | What The Folly?!

  7. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on U.S. competitiveness | What The Folly?!

  8. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: Mitt Romney on the U.S. exit from Afghanistan in 2014 | What The Folly?!

  9. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on the 2014 U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan | What The Folly?!

  10. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on Romney's plan to increase military spending | What The Folly?!

  11. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on China | What The Folly?!

  12. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: Mitt Romney on Iran's nuclear program | What The Folly?!

  13. Pingback: Third presidential debate transcript: President Barack Obama on Iran’s nuclear program | What The Folly?!

  14. Pingback: Third presidential debate: Mitt Romney on Israel & Iran | What The Folly?!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.