Senator Mitch McConnell broke his silence to offer a conclusive opinion on Libya. Up until now he had been pretty supportive of the presidents plan. Politico reports:
“Will America’s commitment end in days, not weeks, as the president promised? What will be the duration of the non-combat operation, and what will be the cost? What national security interest of the United States justified the risk of American life? What is the role of our country in Libya’s ongoing civil war?,” McConnell asked. “The president made clear that our combat forces’ role in Libya will be limited in scope and duration. Tonight, I hope he will reiterate that pledge — or ask Congress before extending the duration or scope of our mission there.”
You might be having dejavu like I am because this letter sound eerily similar to the one House Speaker John Boehner sent last week to the president. Now, the talking points are starting to come together. The GOP leadership has decided to go with the old “The objective in Libya is vague and not clearly defined” approach. I have nothing against this criticism. I agree with Boehner and McConnell that the objectives in Libya are not clearly defined, making it very difficult to understand how far the mission will go. We’ll see if after tonight the presidents speech tonight whether this “unclear objective” talking point catches on.
Here’s my hunch. Whatever point the president does not address well will become the newest punching bag for opponents of the fight. That is why I stand my remarks this morning about this being a critical moment for the president.