Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson apologizes for flubbing a question about Syria during a national interview, telling supporters that ''regime change'' is one of the party's key issues. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION). Story: Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson started off a rally in New York on Saturday with an apology to his supporters. Johnson told the gathering, "I'm sorry" for his gaffe on Aleppo. When asked during an MSNBC interview what he would do about the continuing battle for Syria's biggest city, Aleppo, which has been in the news daily in recent weeks, Johnson replied, "What is Aleppo?" The embarrassing exchange followed a forum on Wednesday night in which Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican rival Donald Trump sought to showcase their national security and defense credentials. He told supporters on Saturday that the civil war in Syria is just one in a long string of U.S. attempts at "regime change," an issue he said is a key issue that Libertarians oppose. Johnson, a former Republican governor of New Mexico, has been trying to turn the two major candidates' low approval ratings to his advantage in the race to win the Nov. 8 election. However, he has just 8.6 support in the current average of opinion polls by website RealClearPolitics in a match up with Clinton, Trump, and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. While the Libertarian Party has long rejected U.S. military intervention abroad, the candidate's failure to recognize one of the most troubled spots in the Middle East drew ridicule and prompted speculation that his campaign was essentially over.