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Romney Slams Huckabee, Defends Bush's Foreign Policy

From CBS News' Scott Conroy

HUMBOLDT, Iowa Mitt Romney ripped into Iowa frontrunner Mike Huckabee at a town hall in Humboldt, Iowa, this morning over an article Huckabee penned in the current issue of the journal Foreign Affairs. In the article, the former Arkansas governor accused the Bush administration of having an "arrogant bunker mentality" on the world stage.

"I said, 'Did this come from Barack Obama? Or from Hillary Clinton? Did it come from John Edwards?" Romney told the crowd of about 100 people. "No, it was one of our own. It was Governor Huckabee."

At a press conference following the event, Romney went into further depth in criticizing Huckabee's piece, seeming to imply that Huckabee does not have the depth of knowledge on foreign policy required to become commander-in-chief.

"I was disappointed in the quality of the thinking and the quality of the recommendations there," Romney said.

The Romney campaign sent out a press release to reporters entitled "NO LAUGHING MATTER: Huckabee's Playground diplomacy," which mocked some of Huckabee's past statements on diplomacy and noted what was perhaps an ill-advised quip Huckabee made a couple of weeks ago during a radio interview when he said, "I may not be the expert that some people are on foreign policy, but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night."

Governor Romney said that while Mr. Bush's foreign policy has not been perfect, especially in some of the handling of the Iraq war, the president should be commended, rather than criticized by fellow Republicans.

"So we ought to be saying thank you to the president for keeping us safe these last six years," Romney said. "And I'm the last person to say that this administration has suffered through an arrogant bunker mentality."


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    Scott Conroy is a National Political Reporter for RealClearPolitics and a contributor for CBS News.