Romney: Russia is not ‘a threat to us’

Mitt Romney seems to agree with President Obama when it comes to Russia -- at least in one respect.

Romney, appearing on Fox News on Tuesday night, was asked about Obama's statement that Russia is a "regional power" and that there are much bigger threats to the United States.

Romney said he doesn't see Russia as a direct threat, but that it still has a big impact worldwide.

"This is a nation which I don’t see as a threat to us," Romney said. "But in terms of who's playing politically against America, of course it’s Russia, and of course the president recognizes that. He may not want to say it, but of course he recognizes that on the playing field of the United Nations and geopolitics, it's Russia.”

Obama criticized Romney during the 2012 presidential campaign for saying Russia was the United States's No. 1 geopolitical foe. (Obama at the time suggested Romney had said Russia was the No. 1 threat, but Romney wasn't speaking in terms of threats.)

Given the events in Ukraine, Obama was asked Tuesday to revisit that back-and-forth to determine whether Romney was right. This is when Obama made the comment about Russia being a "regional power."

During his interview Tuesday, Romney noted that Russia has about twice the nuclear warheads that the United States does and plays a key role in the situations in Iran and Syria.

Asked about Obama's "regional" comment, Romney suggested that region is pretty vast.

"Russia obviously plays in some very important regions of the world," Romney said.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.
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