Senator calls Obama weak in Middle East

July 29, 2012 at 1:19 PM

WASHINGTON, July 29 (UPI) -- A Republican senator Sunday blasted President Obama for supposed weakness in the Middle East and contended a Mitt Romney presidency would be tougher.

With Romney himself on a high-profile visit to Israel, Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., appeared on CNN's "State of the Union" to chastise Obama for allowing the situation in Syria to deteriorate and failing to derail Iran's nuclear program.

"He [Obama] has actually made us weaker around the world, as opposed to stronger, and Mitt Romney will stand strong with our allies," Ayotte declared.

Ayotte, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, did not discuss any specific steps a Romney administration might take in the Middle East; however, she assured CNN "he won't go around and apologize for America."

Speaking in the president's defense, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., told CNN Obama was fully engaged in the Middle East and had been a solid ally of Israel. "He has put together the strongest coalition of countries around the world to put pressure on Iran not to develop a nuclear weapon, it includes China and Russia," Durbin said.

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