Romney radio ads confront Obama’s “horses and bayonets”


Mitt RomneyMitt Romney released a trio of new swing-state radio ads knocking President Obama over his “horses and bayonets” quip during the final presidential debate.

The ads come as the GOP nominee looks to rally support among veterans in Virginia, Florida and New Hampshire — states with heavy interest in the defense industry, reported The Hill story.

The ads feature Romney, during the debate, decrying the shrinking size of the U.S. Navy’s fleet: “Our Navy now is smaller than any time since 1917. The Navy said they needed 313 ships to carry out their mission; we’re now down to 285. … That’s unacceptable to me,” Romney says.

A narrator than chides the president for using Romney’s critique to crack a joke at the Republican nominee’s expense.

“To Mitt Romney, that’s a problem. To President Obama, it’s a chance to deliver a punch-line,” the voiceover says, before transitioning to Obama saying, “We also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military’s changed.”

The narrator then makes an argument that Obama’s “flippant” remarks were insulting to both Romney and those whose jobs depend on the military. Each ad is tailored to the individual state where it will air, noting the specific impact of sequestration cuts in that battleground.

“The state of our Navy, the state of our entire U.S. military, is crucial for America. Our freedom depends on it. And so do many of our jobs, 41,900 in Florida alone. Does President Obama know how much his defense cuts will hurt us?” the narrator in the Florida version says. “Sure, his flippant remarks insult Mitt Romney, but do they also expose how President Obama views the world and America’s place in it?”

Romney has repeatedly highlighted Obama’s “horses and bayonets” line in ads, but the president’s campaign has been unapologetic. In a statement earlier this week, Obama spokesman Danny Kanner called Romney “out of touch” and “backward-looking” in regard to the Navy.

See The Hill story here