On Saturday night, all the Republican candidates gave us reason to worry about what they'd do as commander in chief
It was, CBS's Scott Pelley said, the "commander-in-chief debate," and the 90 minutes that followed fairly well fulfilled that description. For the first time, the Republican presidential candidates were thrust into hypothetical tests of what they might decide from the White House on critical national-security questions ranging from Iran's nuclear program to torture.
While there was no foreign policy equivalent of Rick Perry's "oops" moment from the last debate, a colossal error in other words--Perry himself, in fact, made something of a comeback--some of the candidates were clearly squirming. Many of their answers made us squirm. And many of them gave us reason to worry.
Mitt Romney has clearly oriented his entire campaign toward attacking President Obama and leaving his GOP rivals behind. Asked about Iran, he declared bluntly that this is "of course President Obama's greatest failing." Since he's lodged similar charges about "Obamacare" and other policies it seemed to be, for Romney, a bit of slippage back into the kind of careless hyperbole associated with his first presidential campaign. "If we reelect Barack Obama, Iran will have a nuclear weapon and you elect me as the next president, they will not have a nuclear weapon," he said, without offering up anything resembling evidence.