Romney criticizes Obama’s response to Middle East violence

Mitt Romney sharply criticized President Barack Obama's response to attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Egypt and the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, accusing him of sympathizing with those who carried out the attacks.

"I'm outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American Consulate worker in Benghazi," Romney said in a statement issued to reporters late Tuesday. "It's disgraceful that the Obama administration's first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks."

Romney was referring to a statement issued by the U.S. Embassy in Cairo that apologized for an obscure film insulting the Prophet Muhammad being distributed by an Israeli-American real estate developer that prompted the protests Tuesday. But as ABC's Jake Tapper notes, the embassy statement was released before violence broke out.

An unnamed Obama administration official disavowed that apology to Politico's Byron Tau, saying it "does not reflect the views of the U.S. government."