The Diplomat: Romney’s ‘Pivot’ …to George W. Bush?
Truman Fellow Doug Raymond in the Diplomat for his piece on Romney’s foreign policy shift:
After months of campaigning that has been largely devoid of foreign policy debate, the American electorate is finally seeing some contrast between the candidates’ views following the first presidential debate and Gov. Romney’s foreign policy address at the VMI on Monday.
China emerged as an economic bogeyman. Governor Romney took several pot shots at China during the debate, arguing that America’s economic security is at risk due to borrowing money from China. “Is the program so critical it’s worth borrowing money from China to pay for it? And if not, I’ll get rid of it.” President Obama hit China on the campaign trail, vowing to close loopholes that allow companies to claim tax deductions for exporting jobs, and pointing out that Romney’s former firm, Bain capital, pushed companies to outsource jobs to China. He’s also enacted measures to block Chinese firm from working on a wind energy project that is close to a military base, and has initiated action at the WTO to challenge China’s subsidies for Auto parts.
While they both seem to agree that China is of growing economic concern, the candidates have sketched out increasingly divergent positions on U.S. security issues. President Obama is several years into a “pivot” to Asia. Fulfilling a central campaign theme, he ended the war in Iraq and executed a surge in Afghanistan, leading to the planned completion of the U.S. mission by 2014. He has also invested in strengthening U.S. relations with other countries in Asia. Two examples are rekindled ties with Burma following its release of human rights activist Aung San Suu Kyi and economic liberalization, and the announcement of closer military ties with Australia, including a new agreement to base U.S. naval forces at a facility in Western Australia.