Andrew Sullivan says he'll use it less scrupulously than the president. But based on what evidence? Current policy is plenty unscrupulous already.
Asked about drone strikes during Monday's foreign policy debate, Mitt Romney basically said that President Obama is right to use them. Expect more drone warfare in 2013 regardless of who wins the election. Does that mean that the two candidates are indistinguishable on the issue? My friend and former boss Andrew Sullivan doesn't think so. "Memo to Conor Friedersdorf," he wrote while live-blogging at The Dish. "You think Romney would be as scrupulous in drone warfare as Obama?" Implicit is the judgment that Obama has been "scrupulous."
But it isn't so.
Sullivan and I agree that Obama won last night's debate, and that he'd be likely to preside over a more prudent, reality-based foreign policy than Romney, based on the respective campaigns that they've run. On drones, however, Romney appears to have the exact same position as Obama. And Obama has been egregiously unscrupulous. I don't want to hear the dodge about how drone strikes are necessary. It's beside the point. This is about the specific ways Obama has waged the drone war. Even if you agree in theory with drone strikes, Obama's actions ought to bother you.