Romney On Mid East Policy: 'The President Tried. He Tried, But He Also Failed' Mitt Romney says the risk of conflict in the Middle East has grown under President Barack Obama's leadership. The Republican presidential contender is calling for a "change of course" in the region.Mitt Romney: "In Iraq, the costly gains made by our troops are being eroded by rising violence, a resurgent Al-Qaeda, the weakening of democracy in Baghdad, and the rising influence of Iran. And yet, America’s ability to influence events for the better in Iraq has been undermined by the abrupt withdrawal of our entire troop presence. The President tried. He tried, but he also failed to secure a responsible and gradual drawdown that would have better secured our gains."