"On one side of this campaign we have a president who has made America lead like America again," Kerry said during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. "And what is there on the other side? An extreme and expedient candidate who lacks the judgment and the vision so vital to the Oval Office, the most inexperienced foreign policy twosome to run for president and vice president in decades."
Despite what was said in Tampa, Fla., during the Republican National Convention, "an exceptional country does care about the rise of the oceans and the future of the planet," Kerry, who lost to President George W. Bush in 2004, said. "That is a responsibility from the Scriptures. And that too is a responsibility of the leader of the free world."
An exceptional nation "demands exceptional leadership ... of an exceptional president," the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said. "And, my fellow Americans, that president is Barack Obama."
Among other things, Obama pledged to focus on al-Qaida and its leadership, Kerry said, and ultimately gave the go-ahead to the military raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan, to take out Osama bin Laden.
"Ask Osama bin Laden is he is better off now than he was four years ago," Kerry said.
Kerry said Obama's opposition "again and again ... has lied" about the U.S. position and Obama's stature on the global stage. Among other things, Republicans have criticized Obama for weakening ties with Israel and not being more aggressive in tackling Iran's nuclear aspirations.
Kerry noted that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has praised Obama and the United States for standing by Israel.
"I'll take the word of Israel's prime minister over Romney any day," Kerry said.
Charging that Romney has changed his position about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan many times, Kerry said, "Mr. Romney, here's a little advice. Before you debate Barack Obama on foreign policy, you better finish the debate with yourself."
He also took Romney to task for not mentioning Afghanistan in his acceptance speech.
"No nominee for president should ever fail, in the middle of war, to pay tribute to our troops overseas in his acceptance speech," Kerry said. "Mitt Romney was talking about America. They are on the front lines every day defending America and they deserve our thanks."
Kerry, a Vietnam War veteran, said some veterans remember that coming home from the war front wasn't easy but "President Obama made it his mission that we welcome our troops home with care and concern."
"Mitt Romney says he believes in America and that he will restore American exceptionalism," Kerry said in closing. "I have news for him, we already have an exceptional American as president and we believe in Barack Obama."
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