Analyst: Obama's 'Good Record' Shows Dems' Foreign Policy Strength

Brookings Institution's Martin Indyk says Mitt Romney "botched" this summer's overseas trip.
3:00 | 10/22/12

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Transcript for Analyst: Obama's 'Good Record' Shows Dems' Foreign Policy Strength
-- -- name -- minutes Martin's joining us from our Washington DC bureau -- is the -- -- was the ambassador to Israel under Clinton he's now at the Brookings institute. Sir let me just ask you if you were prepping the president for tonight's debate how would you handle the following issue. He has we've been discussing this all night despite his foreign policy successes including taking out Osama bin Laden he's now running against a man with zero foreign policy experience. Who is neck and neck with him on issues like who you trust to handle foreign affairs who do you trust on on terrorism and who looks like a commander in chief. How would you advise the president to handle tonight's debate in light of these developments in the fall. But I think B simply has to play himself that is to say. -- the commander in -- And -- and his -- it. Which is the custodian of the American national interest the primary responsibility for keeping the American people say it's pretty good record. And he has to I think. Simply -- his knowledge and experience. In foreign policy and of course find a way to remind people that he's the man. Who caught Osama bin Laden. And that's that's. -- out of the matter for Democrats. The challenge is to show. Strong on foreign policy that an off week. And he has set for -- in his record to demonstrate strength. And so I think that that. He can he can show. The public that he's done a credible job and foreign policy and and Romney as a governor who has no experience in foreign policy and to the extent that he. He got engaged in foreign policy when he went abroad the usage -- parts -- mission. Saudi I think he has. -- how to challenge. In terms of demonstrating that. He has what it takes two to -- -- on average. So the other question though is how much time does the president spends. On Mitt Romney trying to disqualify him. Vs how much time he spends. On trying to. Justify a may be some of the more unpopular -- street and think some people have forgotten about in his own administration. Well obviously he's -- -- prospect of things. They were Paula the bodies I think he will he will try to play on. The kinds of things that Romney it's. That that. Leave him vulnerable to jobs that he's gonna get America into trouble. And -- two areas where I would expect that he tried hard line. What governor Romney sent -- The first statements about Russia and China. Which. Evoke a sense that. -- He doesn't our party's talking about on the case in the case Russian top primary. -- in the case of -- the suggestion that -- have labelling China a currency manipulator that. That -- -- essentially lead is down the road towards trade war with China. I think that's the way -- -- up the second things. To try to. Societe. Romney's approach to foreign policy with George W Bush's approach four points. I think both candidates very much aware that the American people wall -- -- do not want -- candidate. -- -- I want a president whose -- bottom of the war apparently missed. And to the extent that a product can -- that Romney's really. Much more in the bush involvement -- -- on the highway. Threatening -- rob means in a position those kinds of things -- I think he will try to play -- To suggest that Romney would get us in trouble again at least like tourism which precisely because he has that probability I think we'll see Romney. Playing a much more moderate. Shoes when it comes to these kinds of missions to. Mr. ambassador -- when he came into office President Obama had all kinds of idealistic goals about foreign policy. Closing down gitmo he was going to go back to the the Middle East peace talks -- -- -- all -- different things. It's four years later he's had to give up a lot of these as operational goals and becoming more more pragmatic and -- Leader how does he explain away these these promises that fell by the wayside. Well. I'm not sure whether it's gonna come -- -- if Romney. Kind of mental problems -- recognition that not cause. On the peace process. In place and could. He and Romney could find that Obama fails there I think that's a fair criticism. Presidency he sent that out London's -- priorities. And it didn't work but its policy if Romney has a solution. -- -- That that can he can point. For dealing with these issues. To say -- be. Positively Israel. Then -- -- has. His fellow about as a very strong record on the security front. Not -- standing tensions when we Bibi Netanyahu. So he can he can point to two all of the things he's done to ensure its security. That that I think -- oh. Neutralize that chance to make the big issues of the not a suspect -- -- Iraq. Where Romney will -- that that have that Iran is closer to nuclear -- today than four years ago. And Obama will side but we've -- a stronger coalition and more crippling sanctions. And shots of -- negotiated. Outcome. And and -- So it started up in view -- we we just have to move on I apologize for I drafting of the EU it's excellent to have you on Martin Indyk thank you very much for -- from Washington DC tonight.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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