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Monday
May022011

Huckabee: 'Welcome to Hell, Bin Laden'

Photo by CNN via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Several of the potential Republican presidential candidates praised President Barack Obama for his administration’s efforts to kill terrorist leader Osama Bin Laden while others steered clear of mentioning Obama by name.

Each of them thanked American military forces, but some warned that the fight against terrorism is “not over” yet.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee's reaction was perhaps the most forceful of any of the possible GOP candidates: "Welcome to hell, bin Laden."

"It has taken a long time for this monster to be brought to justice," Huckabee said in a statement. "Let us all hope that his demise will serve notice to Islamic radicals the world over that the United States will be relentless is tracking down and terminating those who would inflict terror, mayhem and death on any of our citizens."

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney responded to Sunday night’s announcement by the president that U.S. forces had killed Bin Laden near Islamabad, Pakistan last week.

“This is a great victory for lovers of freedom and justice everywhere,” Romney said. “Congratulations to our intelligence community, our military and the president. My thoughts are with the families of Osama bin Laden's many thousands of victims, and the brave servicemen and women who have laid down their lives in pursuit of this murderous terrorist.”

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who like Romney has formed a presidential exploratory committee, called the development “terrific news for freedom and justice.”

“In the hours after the 9/11 attacks, President Bush promised that America would bring Osama bin Laden to justice — and we did,” Pawlenty said in a statement. “I want to congratulate America's armed forces and President Obama for a job well done. Let history show that the perseverance of the US military and the American people never wavered. America will never shrink from the fight and ultimately those who seek to harm us face only defeat. Today, justice is done, but the fight against radical Islamic terrorism is not yet over."

While Huckabee, Romney and Pawlenty each singled out Presidnet Obama for praise, several other possible Republican candidates did not mention the president by name in their statements on Sunday night's news.

"Thank you, American men and women in uniform," former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin tweeted. "You are America's finest and we are all so proud. Thank you for fighting against terrorism."

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who last week delivered an expansive speech on foreign policy in Washington, said, "This is extraordinary news for all freedom loving people of the world, and I commend all those involved for this historic triumph."

"Americans have waited nearly ten years for the news of Osama bin Laden's death," Santorum said. "And while this is a very significant objective that cannot be minimized, the threat from Jihadism does not die with bin Laden. As we were vigilant in taking him out we need to demonstrate we will continue to be vigilant until the enemy has been subdued."

Rep. Michele Bachmann, a member of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, called the death of Bin Laden, "the beginning of the end of Sharia-compliant terrorism."

"I want to express my deepest gratitude to the men and women of the U.S. military and intelligence community. Their persistence and dedicated service has yielded success in a mission that has gripped our nation since the terrible events of 9/11," Bachmann said in a statement. "Tonight’s news does not bring back the lives of the thousands of innocent people who were killed that day by Osama bin Laden’s horrific plan, and it does not end the threat posed by terrorists, but it is my hope that this is the beginning of the end of Sharia-compliant terrorism."

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