On day of debate, new Obama ad hits Romney on foreign policy

President Obama pauses during a grassroots event at Cornell College Oct. 17, 2012, in Mount Vernon, Iowa. AP Photo

On the day of the final presidential debate that will focus on foreign policy, the Obama campaign is out with a new TV ad that praises the president for ending the war in Iraq and winding down the war in Afghanistan.

"President Obama ended the Iraq War," a narrator says. "Obama's brought 30,000 soldiers back from Afghanistan, and has a responsible plan to end the war," the narrator ads. The ad does not mention that the 30,000 troops the president withdrew were part of the troop surge the president implemented shortly after he took office.

The spot then criticizes Romney, saying he would have "left" 30,000 troops in Afghanistan. It also points out Romney criticized the president's plan to end the war in Afghanistan as his "biggest mistake."

"It's time to stop fighting over there and start rebuilding here," the narrator concludes.

The ad's release coincides with the only presidential debate to focus on foreign policy, where Mr. Obama is likely to challenge Romney over the war in Afghanistan. He could use the issue to paint the Republican candidate as inadequately qualified to be commander-in-chief.

The Obama campaign also released a memo to reporters written by Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee who's been portraying Romney in the president's debate prep sessions. The memo criticizes Romney for failing to mention the war in his convention speech and for "never once" releasing a plan to end the 11-year war.

"In fact, Governor Romney has outlined fewer specific policies for how he would lead on national security issues than any presidential candidate in my memory," Kerry wrote in the memo.

Romney campaign adviser Dan Senor responded to the new ad on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." He said Romney is "obviously very worried" about the wars and that he "supports the 2014 transition" But Senor added that Romney has "had some criticisms along the way in terms of negotiations with the Taliban, the withdrawal of troops during the fighting season on the surge."

  • Leigh Ann Caldwell On Twitter»

    Leigh Ann Caldwell is a political reporter for CBSNews.com.

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