In a statement issued today, Mitt Romney calls on the new Libyan government to extradite the Lockerbie bomber:
The world is about to be rid of Muammar el-Qaddafi, the brutal tyrant who terrorized the Libyan people. It is my hope that Libya will now move toward a representative form of government that supports freedom, human rights, and the rule of law. As a first step, I call on this new government to arrest and extradite the mastermind behind the bombing of Pan Am 103, Abdelbaset Mohmed Ali al-Megrahi, so justice can finally be done.
Rick Perry focuses on how the end of Qaddafi’s rule should be a cause for “cautious celebration” in his statement:
The crumbling of Muammar Ghadafi’s reign, a violent, repressive dictatorship with a history of terrorism, is cause for cautious celebration. The lasting impact of events in Libya will depend on ensuring rebel factions form a unified, civil government that guarantees personal freedoms, and builds a new relationship with the West where we are allies instead of adversaries.
I’ll be updating this post with statements from the remaining presidential candidates as they come in.
UPDATE: Jon Huntsman, who opposed military action in Libya, is “hopeful” for the nation now:
The impending fall of Colonel Gaddafi is one chapter in the developing story of a nation in turmoil. Gaddafi has been a longtime opponent of freedom, and I am hopeful — as the whole world should be — that his defeat is a step toward openness, democracy and human rights for a people who greatly deserve it.
UPDATE II: Rick Santorum focuses on Libya’s future and stresses that President Obama “had little to do with this triumph”:
Ridding the world of the likes of Gadhafi is a good thing, but this indecisive President had little to do with this triumph. The stated task from the very beginning for this administration was to determine whether the US can positively influence the direction of the successor government. As we have seen in Egypt, the euphoria of toppling a dictator does not always result in more security for us and our allies in the region.
UPDATE III: Michele Bachmann repeats her opposition to the Libyan mission in her statement:
I opposed U.S. military involvement in Libya and I am hopeful that our intervention there is about to end. I also hope the progress of events in Libya will ultimately lead to a government that honors the rule of law, respects the people of Libya and their yearning for freedom, and one that will be a good partner to the United States and the international community.