9:25 am Jul. 30, 20121
The Obama campaign had lots to say on Sunday morning about Mitt Romney's overseas swing.
“Mitt Romney wondered aloud whether London was ready for the Olympics, and I think it’s clear that voters in this country wonder aloud whether Mitt Romney is ready for the world," said Robert Gibbs, a top adviser to of Barack Obama's re-election campaign, on ABC's "This Week." "And I think the world is not yet ready for Mitt Romney.”
Romney's bungled roll-out, in which he questioned the readiness and Olympic spirit of the British people, had even conservative commentators like Karl Rove and Bill Kristol scratching their heads.
“I don’t think that a gaffe or a YouTube moment is really going to make or break this particular election,” said Kevin Madden, who has become the new public spokesman for Romney's campaign in recent weeks, in response to Gibbs.
In a campaign mostly focused on gaffes so far—the Romney campaign announced 18 events in 12 states to push Obama's "you didn't build that" line—there seemed to be a brief breakthrough of substantive policy from Jerusalem on Sunday morning, when an adviser there told the press that Romney would "respect" a pre-emptive strike by Israel against Iran.
This led to some scrambling in Romney-land, which tamped down the talk without totally disowning it.
Romney, who got a warm reception from Benjamin Netanyahu, is hoping to convey to Israel supporters at home that he would be a stronger ally to Israel that Obama without directly criticizing the president from abroad.
"[W]e should use every diplomatic and political vehicle that's available to us to keep Iran from becoming a nuclear capability state," Romney told Jan Crawford on "Face the Nation." "Those actions should be executed with the greatest speed that we can muster."
If those actions failed, he added, "then we do have other options and we don't take those other options off the table. But that's as far as I'm willing to go in terms of discussing this matter while on foreign soil."
He shrugged off a new Newsweek cover that wonders whether he's too much of a "wimp" to be president.
Romney, whose school-age bullying consumed a couple of news cycles earlier in the campaign, said he didn't remember being called a bully.
"If I worried about what the media said I wouldn't get much sleep, and I sleep pretty well," said Romney.
In an entirely unrelated conversation on "Fox News Sunday," Justice Antonin Scalia suggested he might wait for a Republican administration before he decides to retire.
"Of course, I would not like to be replaced by someone who immediately sets about undoing everything that I've tried to do for 25 years, 26 years, sure," he told Chris Wallace. "I mean, I shouldn't have to tell you that. Unless you think I'm a fool."
Scalia again declined to say whether Chief Justice John Roberts had switched his opinion on the court's landmark health ruling, saying the host would have to ask Roberts.
He did say that even a "textualist" like himself might abide some legislative restrictions on the Second Amendment.
"Some undoubtedly are [permissible], because there were some that were acknowledged at the time," he said. "For example, there was a tort called affrighting, which if you carried around a really horrible weapon just to scare people, like a head ax or something, that was, I believe, a misdemeanor."
More by this author:
- Legislators don't understand a real-estate provision, 'Morning Joe' doesn't understand Russell Brand
- Gillibrand is 'quite optimistic' about repealing DOMA soon