A feisty and combative President Obama made clear today he will not allow Republican challenges to his foreign policy record to go unanswered.
Yesterday, Mitt Romney at the Republican Jewish Coalition Forum here in Washington lambasted Mr. Obama for adopting a foreign policy of "appeasement" that "betrays a lack of faith in America."
"Obama doesn't understand America," Romney said. "This president appears more generous to our enemies than he is to our friends. Such is the natural tendency of someone who is unsure of America's strength - or of America's rightful place in the world."
To that, Mr. Obama said defiantly, "Ask Osama bin Laden and the 22-out-of-30 top al Qaeda leaders who've been taken off the field whether I engage in appeasement. Or whoever is left out there, ask them about that."
On Iran, he defended his policy amid harsh criticism yesterday from Republicans who accused him of coddling Tehran.
Today, the president said pointedly, "No options off the table means I'm considering all options... this administration has systematically imposed the toughest sanctions on Iraq -- on Iran ever."
For the first time, he was asked to defend his administration's controversial position to block the sale of the morning after pill.
Stunningly, he brought his two daughters up to defend the decision. He said a 10 year old should not be able to go into a drug store and buy the pill "alongside bubble gum or batteries."
Finally, he issued a threat to Republicans who have blocked extension of his payroll tax cut holiday. The president said he's willing to give up the sun and sand in Hawaii with his family and stay in Washington "as long as it takes."
"Maybe we'll have a White Christmas here in Washington," he said. "With respect to my vacation, I would not ask anybody to do something I'm not willing to do myself."