Romney praises veterans in 9/11 remarks
September 11th, 2012
03:43 PM ET
10 years ago

Romney praises veterans in 9/11 remarks

Reno, Nevada (CNN) – On the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, Mitt Romney told National Guardsmen they were needed "now as much as ever before" to protect America in an uncertain and turbulent world.

The GOP presidential nominee marked the 11th anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks with a speech to the National Guard Association of the United States in Reno Tuesday, where he recalled the horror he felt that day and laid out his views on ensuring an "American century."

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"We live in a time of turbulence and disruption. What I can say with certainty is that we need the National Guard's vigilance and strength now as much as ever before," Romney told a seated audience of men and women in uniform. "This century must be an American Century. It began with terror, war, and economic calamity. It is now our duty to steer it onto the path of freedom, peace, and prosperity."

Romney praised veterans for their service and vowed as president he would "keep faith" with them when they return home, with better care and benefits and the opportunity to find good jobs at home.

"Many have known violence so that their neighbors could know peace," he said in sweeping appreciation of the nation's veterans. "They have done more than protect America; their courage and service defines America."

Romney said he would not lay out the differences between him and his opponent in his speech – but he nonetheless continued his criticism of the congressionally-backed military cuts set to kick in next January. Romney has hammered Obama over those cuts – part of an agreement to force action on deficit-reduction – on the stump in recent days.

As troops return home from Afghanistan, Romney said "the return of our troops cannot and must not be used as an excuse to hollow out our military through devastating defense budget cuts."

Romney ended his speech by thanking the guardsmen for their service – a remark Democrats were likely to seize on after Romney failed to mention the conflict in Afghanistan or explicitly thank the troops there during his Tampa convention speech.

"You would become all too familiar with the mountains of the Hindu Kush and the streets of Fallujah," Romney said of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. "Throughout the last eleven years, Guardsmen and women have helped keep us safe from attack, and the nation owes you a great debt of gratitude."

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Veterans
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. Vic of New York

    A day late, a dollar short..... And still missing the point. "Which way" Romney just can't get it right.

    Thanks for using the 9/11 memorium to talk about your military budget dreams, Mitt.

    September 11, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |

    ". . . he nonetheless continued his criticism of the congressionally-backed military cuts set to kick in next January."

    I hope this serial flip flopper knows that his VP pick voted for the cuts too.

    September 11, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  3. Al-NY,NY

    a little late there Flip the Teleprompter man

    September 11, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  4. d

    Oh now he remembers the troops...they must have been on his laundry list today...he is a pathetic man!

    September 11, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  5. CB FL

    This was supposed to be a day to put the campaign aside and remember 911. But Willard could not let a chance go by to talk about the defense cuts. This is a man that will send your sons and daughers to war. In his family history no one in the Romney family history has served. This man has no shame.

    September 11, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  6. Ken

    I King Tabby Nackle bishop romney ran off to France & evaded Serving our Country But i wanna be Commander in Chief. Ya little Coward, ya got no Biz running.

    September 11, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  7. Lynda/Minnesota

    Not having anything nice to say about Romney's 9/11 antics, it's best I keep my thoughts to myself on this 9/11 article and the Paul Ryan 9/11 article.

    September 11, 2012 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  8. JimB

    He took the opportunity to politicize 9/11 today with this speech. It was disgusting.

    September 11, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  9. alien

    He needs to thank the vets, after all they did their duties and his when he ran off to france and avoided vietnam. Coward.

    September 11, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  10. John the Historian

    Willard the draft dodger. I hope everyone remembers this latter day cult follower. He went to France to try to convert the French. What a joke. How many mormons are there in France ? Latter days only make up 1 percent of the US population. I guess that is appropriate since he is a percenter. His wife isn't even educated and only knows mormon cult theology which is worthless. The book of mormon is total fiction. Show us this 200 pound gold book of tablets. Since Willard get 56 wives on the planet of kolob, which is the same number Brigham Young had, had many husbands does Anne get ? How can anyone take this guy seriously. He honors and worships a murderer, rapist, and con man like Joseph Smith amd Brigham Young. No Christian Church recognizes the book of mormon. What does that tell you ???

    September 11, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  11. cali girl

    RobmeysSaid, "This century must be an American Century. It began with terror, war, and economic calamity. It is now our duty to steer it onto the path of freedom, peace, and prosperity."
    OK, I get the part about terror and war. Economic calamity has nothing to do with 9/11, unless he projects that right on to Bush.

    September 11, 2012 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  12. Lyin Ryan should be an Olympian

    Just heard that the Romney creep couldn't abide by the agreement to not politicize 9/11 in his speech today. Disgusting.
    Chalk it up as yet another reason why he will go down in a crushing defeat on 11/6.
    Pathetic flip-flopping liar.

    September 11, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Mitt, you've missed the boat again. Trying to make up for his bungled convention speech, I see. He's picked the wrong venue on the wrong day. He should be sitting down with some real people, like fire fighters.

    Today is supposed to be about the innocent lives that were lost, and the heroes that died with them. America's military is not even in the picture today, Mitt.

    September 11, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  14. B.

    Romney is a pandering hack. Everyone knows that he never mentioned the troops, or the War during his entire Convention and took heat for it!

    Now he tries to make up for his lack of concern, the man is incompetent and does not have a clue!

    September 11, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  15. SuperD

    It tells me John the Historian is a progressive idiot

    September 11, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  16. Strategic Bob

    The Romney/Ryan plan, like that of our last Republican President, would slash the VA budget. Darth Cheney justified it back then with his prediction that few woulnded would be coming back from Iraq because our troops there would be greeted as liberators and be given flowers by the Iraqi people.

    Well, we know how that turned out, don't we? What is the justification now for slashing medical care and other assistance for disabled veterans? Maybe because injury, disability and poverty are the proper rewards for the moral failings of being wounded or being born to parents who weren't rich enough to support you ever after.

    These days, to be a Republican is to be a traitor to the United States and an embarrassment to decent people everywhere.

    September 11, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. Gotta Be Kiddin

    He finally decided to mention the troops! But could not talk about his time serving in the Vietnam War because he went to France on "Missionary" work for the Mormons. He gave a watered down version of his stump speech on a day when there was to be NO campaigning. Not cool.....not cool :(.

    September 11, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  18. Marie MD

    Hypocrite. First he doesn't mention the men and women who have fought the war against the master mind behind 9/11, bin laden, during his speech to the Nation he claims to love so much during the rnc klan meeting
    Right, how could we forget, he wouldn't have moved heaven or earth or wated time and money doing what the President had the cojones to do.
    Does he know that his boy toy voted time and time against health care coverage for first responders? The lying al tar boy says that his foreign experience, I am NOT making this up, is that he voted for the wars! Really?
    Did the koch brothers, norquist and those who chose the H.R. 3 akin twin as his vp candidate know about his votes against women and those who have died and will die of cancer because of exposure after 9/11?

    September 11, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  19. Lynn

    Wish some ambitious journalist would dig deeper into Romney's Mormon-Mexican connection. Would he dare have more wives and kids stashed there? Polygamy is still openly practiced in Utah and other western states and being a devout Mormon that would be a strong possibility.

    September 11, 2012 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  20. The REAL Truth...

    Willard said, "This century must be an American Century. It began with terror, war, and economic calamity. It is now our duty to steer it onto the path of freedom, peace, and prosperity."
    His best contribution this century toward American "freedom, peace, and prosperity" would be to step down now and let Obama continue with his efforts to get the country back on track. Enough with the domestic terror, war and economic calamity the Grand Obstructionist Party launched on the American people at the end of Dubya's regime. It's time to quit pointing fingers at Obama... accept responsibilty. Man up.. RELEASE YOUR TAX returns.. or go home!

    September 11, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  21. lolo

    All the republicans think about is war and infringing on peoples rights. See if any of his sons will opt to go to war when he starts messing with Russia, since he seems to think that they are our number one enemy. This man is living in the cold war days and itching to start a war somewhere with any country. Then he and his buddies will profit off of it. He is suach a hypocrit and liar. Show us those tax returns. Remember the American people will decide who will be president the next four years and right now you are not even in the running.

    September 11, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  22. "When you walk through the door of opportunity, you do not close it, you reach behind you and help someone else" Michelle O!

    Just shows that in the heart of a draft dodger, the real sacrifices paid for his freedom is just not important.

    Unless of courese, by ignoring them it could cost him an election.

    Better late than never, eh, Myth?

    September 11, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  23. dreamer96

    Mitt Romney a 3 time draft dodger who used his position as a minister in the church of LSD to avoid the draft...Picks Paul Ryan who has cuts in Veterans Benefits...

    Two very religions men that pray to a pacifist God...and are now talking like War Mongering Religious Conservatives...calling for new unfunded wars against Iran and Syria..and asking parents around America to send their young adult men and women off to fight for Wall Street.....Ironic

    September 11, 2012 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  24. GI Joe

    All that man really cares about is his bottom line. Otherwise his money would be in the USA creating jobs. If only he was patriotic.

    September 11, 2012 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  25. Thomas

    Five sons all avoided voluntary military service.

    Thanks for your support Mr Romney !

    September 11, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |