Wednesday, February 13, 2008

McCain In Full Pander Mode

Senator John McCain at the CNN/YouTube debate on November 28, 2007, responding to Anderson Cooper's question "Is waterboarding torture?":

And again, I would hope that we would understand, my friends, that life is not "24" and Jack Bauer.

Life is interrogation techniques which are humane and yet effective. And I just came back from visiting a prison in Iraq. The Army general there said that techniques under the Army Field Manual are working and working effectively, and he didn't think they need to do anything else.

My friends, this is what America is all about. This is a defining issue and, clearly, we should be able, if we want to be commander in chief of the U.S. Armed Forces, to take a definite and positive position on, and that is, we will never allow torture to take place in the United States of America.

Fast forward to February 13, 2008. The Senate approves by 51 to 45 an intelligence authorization bill containining a provision, sponsored by Dianne Feinstein (D.- Cal.), which would restrict the C.I.A. to the 19 intelligence techniques authorized by the Army Field Services Manual, which prohibits eight specific techniques, including waterboarding. And John McCain, under attack from the far right of his party? He joins 42 other Repubs in voting against the measure. (Five Republicans vote "aye" and one does not vote.)

Score it a victory for Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, Ann Coulter & Co.- and a defeat for candor.

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