Carol Platt Liebau: Who's the <i>Real</i> Flip-Flopper?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Who's the Real Flip-Flopper?

Paul Campos makes a strong case that it's McCain:

-- On abortion rights, McCain has done a 180-degree turn, from favoring only the most minor restrictions and opposing the overturning of Roe v. Wade, to supporting an almost total ban, while advocating that the Supreme Court reverse Roe immediately.

-- McCain has transformed himself from a deficit hawk who mocked supply-side economics into someone who sounds like he's drunk deeply from the wackiest vats of supply-side Kool-Aid, to the point where he now claims raising taxes decreases revenues (a claim so wildly in conflict with the facts -- for example, federal tax revenues almost doubled in real terms after the Clinton tax increases -- that it's either a shameless lie or a product of astounding ignorance).

-- In regard to ethanol subsidies, McCain has gone from treating them as the worst sort of pork to becoming a strong supporter of a program despised by economists, but beloved of Iowa farmers and the good people at Archer Daniels Midland.

-- Six years ago, McCain sternly condemned Jerry Falwell as "an agent of intolerance." Eighteen months ago, he gave the commencement address at Falwell's university, while openly embracing one of the most noxious figures of the religious right.

These are just a few examples from a far longer list.

What's interesting is that -- in contrast to Romney -- there's reason to believe that John McCain isn't sincere about his new positions. Take his comment about the fence: "I'll build the goddamned fence if they [that's you, voters] want it."

Doesn't it remind you of Uncle Don, the children's radio talk show host who spoke in dulcet tones to his young listeners and then one day, thinking the mike had been turned off, announced, "That should hold the little bastards"?


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