Romney Delivers Red Meat Rhetoric To CPAC Crowd
Mitt Romney was the first likely presidential contender to address the Conservative Political Action Conference on Friday, but he still had a tough act to follow.
A high bar loomed for the frontrunning Republican for the 2012 nomination, a three-time winner of the conference's straw poll, and a former governor with a record on social issues and health care reform that gives some conservatives pause.
Romney met expectations and received a rousing reception similar to the one he received upon dropping out of the presidential race at the conference in 2008, but he didn't bring the house down, either. He sounded like a polished frontrunner, delivering a forceful and animated case against the Obama administration.
"It's going to take a lot more than new rhetoric to put Americans back to work--it's going to take a new president,'' Romney said.
Romney focused the beginning of his speech on foreign policy, offering sharp jibes against Obama.
"An uncertain world has been made more dangerous by the lack of clear direction from a weak President," he said. "I surely hope that at some point in the near future, the President will finally be able to construct a foreign policy, any foreign policy."
But Romney made no mention about the crisis in Egypt currently testing the administration - a notable omission.
Romney also delivered some well-received zingers on the president's domestic policy, calling his economic program the "most expensive failed social experiment in modern history." But he barely mentioned the Republican party's top target -- "Obamacare,'' -- which, like the health care plan Romney spearheaded in Massachusetts, requires most people to buy insurance.