On the Stump, Romney Defends Bush
By Michael D. Shear
DAVENPORT, Iowa -- In his pursuit of ways to criticize Mike Huckabee, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney has to say thank-you to none other than Mike Huckabee.
The former Arkansas governor and new front-runner in Iowa blasted President Bush in a recent article, saying that Bush has pursued foreign policy with an "arrogant bunker mentality." Romney has seized on that phrase, using it at almost every stop in an attempt to appeal to the many Republicans who still like the president.
Standing across the Mississippi River from the Rock Island Arsenal, a major Army weapons manufacturing facility that employs more than 6,000 people, Romney praised Bush and said Huckabee made "a significant error" by "insulting the president."
"It's one thing to be critical" of policy, Romney said. "It's a very different matter to suggest that the cause of missteps or mistakes are the result of arrogance or a bunker mentality."
President Bush's approval rating overall remains historically low. But Romney is hoping to point out Huckabee's "insult" to the Republicans who are likely to participate in the Iowa caucus in 15 days. Among that group, the president's popularity rating is very high.
"The president is a person who is deeply devoted to this country," Romney said. "He is not a person who acts out of arrogance or a bunker mentality."
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