In his first 2012 campaign appearance in almost two weeks, President Obama added a new item to a long list of what he views as major accomplishments of his tenure: killing Osama bin Laden.
“Because of the extraordinary bravery of the men and women who wear this nation’s uniform and the outstanding work of our intelligence agencies, Osama bin Laden will never again threaten the United States of America,” he said to loud applause at a fund-raising event in the Moody Theater in Austin, Tex., on Tuesday evening. “We couldn’t be prouder of them.”
The comment may have gotten even more applause, except that a man in the audience of 750 had stolen Obama’s line. A few minutes earlier, one of the donors shouted loudly “thank you for getting bin Laden” while Obama was talking about the economy. The crowd cheered.
The remark was not surprising in that Obama’s chief reelection message has been that he has taken on big challenges, such as a health-care reform, that eluded other presidents. But administration officials have steered clear of suggesting Obama will benefit politically from the successful bin Laden mission.