Last night’s foreign policy debate had its moments of the last debate’s fierceness, but it also had something new: agreement. The Middle East is likely to take up much of the next president’s time, and questions on the revolutions in Libya and Egypt and the violence in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan (did I cover everything?) covered the mass of the ninety minutes. But China got its few minutes in the spotlight, and the candidates even turned to education policy when it suited them. For a quick overview, below is our fourth and final installment of the Gif Guide to the Debates.
+ Best factchecks of the night
Romney: “The president began what I have called an apology tour, of going to various nations in the Middle East and criticizing America.”
The real deal according to politifact.com: Pants on fire. “While he criticized past U.S. actions, such as torture practices at Guantanamo, he did not offer one apology.”
Obama: “You are familiar with jobs being shipped overseas because you invested in companies that were shipping jobs overseas.”
The real deal according to politifact.com: Half true. “[Outsourcing] was widely seen as profitable and Bain selected companies that would succeed…There is a gray area of direct accountability, because no one has reported that [Romney] was personally involved in managing those firms.”
+ Welcome to the gun show
Obama and Romney often agreed on best course of action was in the different foreign policy predicaments that arose. But even in those moments they found opportunities to make their opponent sound weak.
When asked about the Obama’s withdrawal of support for former Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak during the revolution there, Romney said Obama had done the right thing. But there was still room to sneak in a jab. “For us to be able to promote those principles of peace requires us to be strong. And that begins with a strong economy here at home. Unfortunately, the economy is not stronger.”
+ “We have these things called aircraft carriers where planes land on them”
Seems like Obama has been studying Joe Biden’s debate playbook. From his first response he was on the attack and the one-liners flowed on throughout the debate.
Obama won meme of the night with his response to Romney’s attack that Obama had left the Navy “smaller now that at any time since 1917.” Obama’s way of saying that we our military of a century ago shouldn’t be our standard set Twitter ablaze: “Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military's changed.”