In response to debate moderator Martha Raddatz’s first question on whether the miscommunication that occurred between the State Department, the Libyan government and the Executive Branch was “a massive intelligence failure?” Ryan assured viewers that a Romney-Ryan administration would never let such a blunder occur.
“If we’re hit by terrorists, we’re going to call it what it is- a terrorist attack,” said Ryan.
He said the Obama administration failed to lead America abroad by apologizing for the anti-Islam video instead of speaking out against terrorism.
He also said that Obama’s actions, or lack of action, after the Libyan attack that resulted in the death of ambassador Chris Stevens, is the perfect example of Obama’s lack of foreign policy expertise.
“What we are watching on our TV screens is the unraveling of the Obama foreign policy,” Ryan said.
“With all due respect that’s a bunch of malarky,” replied Biden, who did not add anything substantial to the topic except to add the fact that Obama killed Osama Bin Laden so he must know what he is doing on foreign policy. Biden spent the bulk of his time during this debate segment talking about the Obama administration’s successes in Iraq and Afghanistan, which have nothing to do with the assault in Libya.
Later, Ryan added that the current President’s policy on Iran is disastrous for America and jabbed Biden for the President’s decision to appear on daytime TV show “The View” rather than meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the U.N. General Assembly meeting in New York last month.
Iran is closer to getting a nuclear weapon, “because this administration has no credibility on this issue,” Ryan said.
Despite never having participated in a debate of that scale, particularly on foreign policy, Ryan nailed Biden on the facts about the situation in Libya and came away the winner of Thursday’s opening question.
Republican nominee Mitt Romney will need to be equally convincing next week when he goes head to head with President Barack Obama for the second time in their only foreign policy debate.
Francesca Chambers contributed to this report.