PRESS RELEASE from Political Action

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, September 17, 2012

New ad asks whether Romney is ‘fit to lead’ after Libya opportunism

Full-page ad from MoveOn will run in largest Va. and N.H. papers, quotes scathing editorial board criticism of Romney

NORFOLK, VA AND MANCHESTER, N.H. – What does Mitt Romney’s response to the deaths of U.S. officials in Libya say about whether he’s “fit to lead?”

That’s the question posed by a full-page print ad Political Action will run in key swing-state newspapers this week. As an answer, the ad quotes editorial boards that rebuked Romney for “vile,” “profoundly inappropriate,” “sad and pathetic” “opportunism amidst a deadly crisis” that reveals “an extraordinary lack of presidential character.”

“MoveOn members are appalled by Mitt Romney’s attempt to score cheap, dishonest political points after the murder of American officials in Libya. Americans deserve better from someone who wants to be president,” said Political Action Executive Director Justin Ruben. “MoveOn members are running this print ad in key swing states so voters know Romney has stooped to a new low — and so they can hold him accountable.”

Last week, after news outlets reported that at least one American had been killed in Libya, the Romney campaign released a statement falsely accusing President Obama of “sympathizing” with the murderers. In the Romney statement — and in remarks he made the next day — Romney also falsely accused President Obama of apologizing for American values, based on a Cairo embassy statement that Obama did not make and that did not include an apology. Romney’s decision to try to exploit American deaths for political gain by launching false attacks against the President has been roundly criticized by Republican and Democratic foreign policy leaders as well as by leading newspaper editorial boards.

Under the headline “Fit to Lead?” MoveOn’s ad features a photo of Romney appearing to smirk as he walks away from a podium after levying his false criticism of Obama. It then includes quotes from editorials that appeared in the New York Times, the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, the Raleigh-Durham News & Observer, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the Miami Herald. MoveOn is placing the full-page ad in the largest newspapers in two key presidential swing states (the Norfolk, Va., Virginian-Pilot and in the Manchester, N.H., Union Leader) this week. A Public Policy Polling survey released Sunday night shows that by a 48-41 margin, Virginia voters already disapprove of how Romney reacted to the situation in Libya.