James Thompson, Republican 9/11 Commissioner, praises Obama

May 2, 2011

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Former Illinois Governor Jim Thompson, a republican who served on the 9/11 Commission, offered praise for President Obama in the wake of Osama bin Laden’s death. Thompson said the president left no doubt about U.S. policy on bin Laden.

“I give President Obama full credit for focusing on the apprehension of Osama bin Laden from the day he took office, for following up and for getting it done yesterday,” Thompson said. He added, however, that Mr. Obama adopted many of the controversial counterterrorism policies of his predecessor, George W. Bush. “It would be hard show where the Bush administration ended and the Obama administration began on these issues because they were sort of a continuum of the same policy.”

Thompson said it’s clear that while bin Laden had let go of day-to-day control of Al Qaeda, he was still in charge of the organization. But Al Qaeda surely has plenty of deputies who could take on the network’s leadership, Thompson said.