Robert Gibbs, a senior advisor to President Obama’s campaign, sought to manage expectations in the upcoming debates by touting rival candidate Mitt Romney’s skill and recent experience as a debater.
Gibbs, appearing on Fox News Sunday, said Romney was the “clear winner” in 16 of the 20 primary debates, and therefore he “starts with an advantage.”
Host Chris Wallace started out the interview on foreign policy issues, pressing Gibbs on whether senior U.S. officials, including United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice, deliberately misled the press and the public with comments in the aftermath of the attack that suggested that the attacks in Libya were not premeditated.
Gibbs said comments from Rice and White House spokesman Jay Carney were based on what they knew at the time. Gibbs tried to pivot the foreign policy issue to an election talking point, saying that the budget proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., includes cuts in diplomatic security.
In other foreign policy news, Gibbs said he had “no problem” with the fact that Obama is scheduled to appear on “The View” next Tuesday, while having no plans for private meetings with world leaders during next week’s U.N. General Assembly meeting.