President Obama related the choices facing the United States in Syria, to the decision-making process in Libya — and criticized Romney's past comments on Libya.
"When we went into Libya and we were able to immediately stop the massacre there because of the unique circumstances and the coalition that we had helped to organize, we also had to make sure that Moammar Gadhafi didn't stay there," said Obama. "And to the governor's credit, you supported us going into Libya and the coalition that we organized. But when it came time to making sure that Moammar Gadhafi did not stay in power, that he was captured, Governor, your suggestion was that this was mission creep, that it was mission muddle.
"Imagine if we had pulled out at that point? Moammar Gadhafi had more American blood on his hands than any other individual other than Osama bin Laden. So we were going to make sure we finished the job. That's why the Libyans stand with us. But we did so in a careful, thoughtful way, making certain that we knew who we were dealing with — that those forces of moderation on the ground were ones we could work with. And we have to take the same kind of steady, thoughtful leadership when it comes to Syria. That's exactly what we're doing."