What foreign leader would honestly want to work with someone like Rick Santorum or Sarah Palin? It's embarrassing that either have ever even been considered serious candidates. The US used to care about its reputation around the world and both parties used to look to the future. The modern GOP does look crazy so I'm glad someone in power outside of the US said it so bluntly.
Whether the Republicans like it or not, the US needs good relations around the world. For both US business expansion and national security, the US has to be on good terms with traditional allies. Sending the village idiots out to talk about either of these issues is never going to be productive.
The Guardian has more remarks from Australia's deputy prime minister and treasurer, Wayne Swan.
"Let's be blunt and acknowledge the biggest threat to the world's biggest economy are the cranks and crazies that have taken over the Republican party," Swan said in a speech to a conference in Sydney.What's terrifying is that Mitt Romney is the best they have to offer, as Kevin Drum wrote about yesterday.
The Republican party's position on the US budget had led a year ago to the deadlock in negotiations, Swan said, to prevent the looming "fiscal cliff" – nearly $600bn in planned spending cuts and tax hikes that will bite early next year.
Congress had been debating whether to increase the US borrowing ceiling but the Republicans would not budge.
"Despite President Obama's goodwill and strong efforts, the national interest was held hostage by the rise of the extreme Tea Party wing of the Republican party," he said.