2012 Presidential Election

The Major Issues: Side-by-Side Analysis

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It represented a genuine and liberal democratic rising that might replace regimes.

American opposition to these risings might result in the emergence of anti-American regimes in these countries.

The United States must embrace the general idea of the Arab risings but be selective in specific cases; thus, it should support the rising in Egypt, but not necessarily in Bahrain

- Barack Obama Official Website

Across the Middle East and North Africa, we have stood with the people demanding political change and seeking their rights during the Arab Spring ... The United States has consistently opposed violence against innocent civilians, supported a set of universal rights for the people of the region, and supported processes of political and economic reform ... We will continue to support the consolidation of democratic transitions in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, and Yemen. And we will engage governments and civil society across the region on behalf of genuine efforts to promote political and economic reforms that are responsive to the people of the region.

The Arab Spring represents the world’s most sweeping recent movement toward democracy.

- Democratic Party Platform 2012

The Romney administration will strive to ensure that the Arab Spring is not followed by an Arab Winter.

To protect our national interests and to promote our ideals, a Romney administration will pursue a strategy of supporting groups and governments across the Middle East to advance the values of representative government, economic opportunity, and human rights, and opposing any extension of Iranian or jihadist influence.

A Romney administration will support those individuals and groups that are seeking to instill lasting democratic values and build sturdy democratic institutions that will sustain open societies.

- Mitt Romney Official Website

We welcome the aspirations of the Arab peoples and others for greater freedom, and we hope that greater liberty – and with it, a greater chance for peace – will result from the recent turmoil.

Many governments in the region have given substantial assistance to the U.S. over the last decade because they understood that our struggle against terror is not an ethnic or religious fight, and that violent extremists are abusers of their faith, not its champions.

- Republican Party Platform 2012

"As the tide of war recedes, a wave of change has washed across the Middle East and North Africa ... How this incredible transformation will end remains uncertain. But we have a huge stake in the outcome ... We will stand against violence ... We will support policies that lead to strong and stable democracies and open markets, because tyranny is no match for liberty."

- Barack Obama (January 24, 2012)

"The Arab Spring is not appropriately named ... It has become a development of more concern and it occurred in part because of the reluctance on the part of various dictators to provide more freedom to their citizens ... the Arab Spring has become the Arab Winter."

- Mitt Romney
(July 27, 2012)

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