— Jason Attermann
Former Representative Mel Levine (D-CA) helped differentiate between the facts of President Barack Obama’s extensive pro-Israel record and the distorted portrayals created by many of the Republican presidential candidates. In his op-ed in Haaretz, Levine took special aim at former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney for disregarding Obama’s efforts to protect Israel and isolate the Iranian regime. Levine wrote:
Gov. Romney recklessly and inaccurately misrepresents President Obama’s record of leadership in foreign policy in general. His disdain for the President Obama’s foreign policy conveniently ignores the president’s leadership in building international coalitions which have imposed exceptionally stiff sanctions on Iran….
And, ironically, in terms of inventing his own facts, the core policies Romney advocates have already been accomplished by President Obama. (Perhaps the former Governor has not been paying attention.) For example, Romney argues that current sanctions against Iran are weak and specifically states that ‘if there ever was a possibility of gaining the Kremlin’s support for tougher sanctions against Tehran … President Obama foreclosed it.’ But he fails to recognize that President Obama succeeded, where others had failed, in obtaining both Russian and Chinese support for international sanctions against Iran, sanctions as a result of the president’s leadership are the strongest that have been obtained by any U.S. president.
During the GOP presidential debates, Romney agreed with Texas Governor Rick Perry’s call for all U.S. aid to other countries to begin at “zero.” For Perry, Israel is included. Levine questioned, “Is this his idea of how the U.S. should increase needed support for Israel?”
President Obama’s policies toward Iran have been tough and clear. As has been his staunch support for Israel. This president understands the threat which a nuclear Iran poses to the international community. That a serious candidate for the Presidency would intentionally distort and misrepresent that clear policy does a disservice to our nation.