Mitt Romney spent his Memorial Day thanking the troops for their years of service but also cautioning them and Americans to not let their guard down.
Speaking in front of crowd 5,000 service members in San Diego, the Republican presidential candidate warned that the nation faces numerous potential threats.
"We have two courses we can follow," he said.
"One is to follow the pathway of Europe, to shrink our military smaller and smaller to pay for our social needs ... The other is to commit to preserve America as the strongest military in the world, second to none, with no comparable power anywhere in the world."
A new Gallup poll released Monday has veterans favoring Romney over Barack Obama 58 percent to 34 percent.