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Excerpt of Remarks at the Kentucky GOP Lincoln Day Dinner in Louisville

February 03, 2007

[Excerpt Of Governor Romney's Remarks As Prepared For Delivery:]

"Recently, the question of how we deal with Iran has been the subject of debate between myself and another potential White House candidate.

"In a speech two days ago in New York City, Senator Hillary Clinton said that she needs to quote 'understand' unquote Iran better - and we need to quote 'engage Iran' unquote. She argued that our strategy of engagement with the Soviet Union during the Cold War was a model for how we could deal with Iran.

"I believe this strategy to be a mistake, and yesterday, to a group of fellow conservatives, I said as much. Advocating engagement displays a troubling timidity toward a terrible threat. The right strategy is not engagement, but economic and diplomatic isolation.

"Instead of responding to my policy criticisms, Senator Clinton has chosen to attack me personally. Let's take a step back and consider the broader and more pressing issue at hand - Iran, Syria, Hizbullah, and Hamas and the threat they pose to us, Israel, and the civilized world.

"Ten days ago, I was in Israel and heard firsthand from those who have been on the front lines of the war against the Jihadist radicals. Indeed, just a few months ago, the Israelis were confronted with a war by Hizbullah, a terrorist organization sponsored by Iran and Syria.

"Against the backdrop of last summer's war, I was especially stunned to learn that Senator Clinton is now advocating for better 'understanding' of Iran, Syria, Hizbullah, and Hamas. Rather than attacking me, why doesn't she join me in calling for a policy that puts even more pressure - not less - against these adversaries?"

Mitt Romney, Excerpt of Remarks at the Kentucky GOP Lincoln Day Dinner in Louisville Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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