Attempts by the Obama Administration to obfuscate and misdirect over the horrible tragedy in Libya are falling apart. As my colleague John Nolte noted, even Democrats on Capitol Hill are demanding answers and a fuller explanation over events surrounding the murder of American diplomatic personnel. New polls suggest voters souring on Obama’s handling of the situation. It may very well be an October Surprise that dashes Obama’s reelection hopes.
A new FoxNews poll shows likely voters disapprove of Obama’s handling of the crisis in Libya, 39-43%. Independents disapprove by a 7-point margin. Seniors by a 15-point margin. Even women, one of the strongest blocks of support for Obama are split 40/40 on disapproval.
But, the voters shifting views are not just confined to Libya. A clear majority, 52-34, of likely voters believe the US should take the lead on world affairs, rather than just wait and react to events. 52% of likely voters believe Mitt Romney is more likely to take the lead, against just 34% who think Obama would.
Only 32% of likely voters think the US is more respected around the world, against 39% who say we are now less respected. Remember, improving our standing in the world was one of Obama’s central promises in 2008.
Three times as many likely voters say we aren’t supportive enough of Israel, 37% as say we are too supportive, 10%. And while a majority of likely voters say its too soon to tell if Obama’s policies towards the Muslim world are working, almost three times as many said they were failing, 29% against 11% who said they were succeeding.
Obama continues to lead Romney on the general question of who can better handle foreign affairs in this poll, but if voter sentiment on these specific issues remains the same, expect that number to change. Indeed, Bloomberg’s latest poll showed Romney, for the first time, beating Obama on who could better handle terrorist threats, 48-42.
It isn’t just that Obama is tone-deaf to the public on the Libyan crisis. That is indeed part of it, as his speech to the United Nations showed. Obama continued his fraud of blaming the embassy attacks on the amateurish video attacking the prophet Mohammad. He went out of his way to condemn the film few have actually seen. But, 61% of likely voters in the Fox poll would prefer a US President to forcefully stand up for free speech instead.
Obama had some nice rhetoric about free speech has just arrested the controversial filmmaker. The government claims the arrest was for a probation violation, but they also denied him bail. How often does that happen in a probation case?
Obama’s real problem, though, is the underlying scandal itself. It bears constant repeating. Four American diplomats were murdered on American soil on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The Libyan government had warned us days ahead of time. Our American Ambassador warned that he was being targeted by Al Queda. And yet, we took precisely zero additional security precautions.
Up until a few days ago, Administration officials have been lying about the circumstances surrounding the terrorist attack. They have even tried to cover-up the basic facts of the assassination.
American elections rarely revolve around foreign policy, especially when the economy is weak. But, they do revolve around questions of trust and competency. On these questions, Obama is failing.