The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Romney: Maybe If I Make My Positions Sound Current, I Can Win

Posted on | December 22, 2011 | 24 Comments

by Smitty

Byron York, via Instapundit:

“You don’t think we would have gone in [to Iraq]?” asked MSNBC’s Chuck Todd.

“Well, of course not,” Romney answered. “The president went in based upon intelligence that they had weapons of mass destruction. Had he known that that was not the case, the U.N. would not have put forward resolutions authorizing this type of action. The president would not have been pursuing that course.”

Romney’s statement on MSNBC is not only a change from what he said on Fox a few days ago. It’s also a change from his position during his first run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2007-2008. In a January 2008 GOP debate in Florida, Romney was asked, “Was the war in Iraq a good idea worth the cost in blood and treasure we have spent?” Romney answered: “It was the right decision to go into Iraq. I supported it at the time; I support it now.”

What I want to hear from candidates is not only their current position on a question, but the reasoning behind the change from “I support it now” to “Well, of course not.”

Has the candidate switched advisors? Has he read some new book on the topic? Opinions evolve. Positions change as new information emerges. Got it. How about a little help here to walk back the whole Ministry of Truth feel?


24 Responses to “Romney: Maybe If I Make My Positions Sound Current, I Can Win”

  1. Anonymous
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 11:27 am

    The reasoning behind any of Mitt’s statements always boils down to “this is what I think I need to say if I want to get elected.”

  2. smitty
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 11:31 am

    There is a broader point to get at here. Exactly how does Public Figure X alter their position on Issue Y and retain any credibility?

  3. Anonymous
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 11:36 am

    I don’t think he went quite far enough to make it stick, but Gingrich did a pretty good job when the issue of him supporting the individual mandate in 1993 came up.

    His response was that at that time it was considered a conservative alternative to HillaryCare. And that’s true as far as it goes (Heritage proposed it).

    To nail it down, he should have followed up with “then in 1994 I led a conservative revolution that re-set the terms of debate in our favor, and we didn’t have to settle for such a small incremental dialback on the Clinton proposal.”

    But mostly, I think, they just count on people not noticing.

  4. Red
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 11:42 am

    Ah, good ol’ MiniTrue. Get used to that. CBS has been doing a pretty good unapologetic imitation for years now.

  5. Christy Waters
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 12:14 pm

    If this is the guy who’s supposed to be our best shot at beating Obama, then I think we’re screwed.

  6. Serfer62
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 12:36 pm

    ORomney = OHbama in White Face

  7. Charles
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 12:49 pm

    Anyone who would rewind the tape on the Iraq War and just push Play again has either been blinded or is not really being honest. What Romney knows now that he didn’t know in 2008 is that the cost of the troop surge ruined the U.S. economy.

    But that’s the hindsight is 20/20 problem. In another decade or two, the Iraq War may look like a brilliant piece of strategy. It all depends on how it works out with Pakistan, Iran, and North Korea.

  8. Robert Sykes
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 12:57 pm

    There is no contradiction here. He merely said that based on available intelligence it was the right decision. Now that we know the intel was bad, in hindsight it was a bad decision. 

    It would help if people spoke English. What a bunch of clowns.

  9. jwallin
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 1:11 pm

    Squeeeeaak. Squeeeeak.

    The sound you hear as Romney “adjusts” his opinion to the prevailing wind.

  10. Steve in TN
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 1:17 pm

    Apparently hindsight is not 20/20 as it was CRA and decades of inept housing/mortgage policy that was most responsible for the economic problems.

  11. Anonymous
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 1:47 pm

    Clorox-dipped Obama.

  12. Anonymous
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 1:53 pm

    Ruined the economy? That’s a lie.

    Congressional Budget Office numbers show that the total cost of the
    eight-year war was less than the stimulus bill passed by the
    Democratic-led Congress in 2009.

  13. Paul Zummo
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 2:41 pm

    What Romney knows now that he didn’t know in 2008 is that the cost of the troop surge ruined the U.S. economy. 

    Good Lord, this is nonsense on stilts.  The downturn in the economy could be attributed to many things – the Iraq War and Surge is assuredly not one of them.

  14. Paul Zummo
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 2:43 pm

    In 2008 we already were aware of the lack of WMD.  So you might want to try another spin.

  15. ThePaganTemple
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 3:17 pm

    They’re not as worried about beating Obama as they are about putting somebody up that won’t offend Obama’s followers or scare the moderates. That’s why Palin’s decision not to run sounded the death knell as far as the hope of having any kind of real conservative candidate. The power structure of the Republican Party needs a good douching. That whole damn organization makes the State Department look like honest, patriotic, constitution loving public servants.

  16. ThePaganTemple
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

    Yeah the Iraq and Afghan Wars damn sure did contribute to it, and anybody that denies that is fooling themselves. But not the Surge. If we had followed the Surge strategy from the beginning we wouldn’t be in this mess.

  17. Christy Waters
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 3:32 pm

    More “good” news, Romney scores the Bush 41 endorsement. Oh joy! I’m convinced. :/

  18. richard mcenroe
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 3:34 pm

    Romney, Other McCain commenters wrong on WMD’s in IRAQ: 

  19. Adjoran
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 4:09 pm

    It’s two different things.  He said he supported the war.  Now he says if we had known there were no WMDs, we would not have invaded because the UN wouldn’t have authorized it and Bush wouldn’t have gone it without that.

    Is English a second language for all you people?

  20. ThePaganTemple
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 4:24 pm

    Yeah, I heard somebody on Fox say something about Bush 41 had endorsed somebody, and I knew immediately who it was going to be. I didn’t even bother to wait to hear it.

  21. ThePaganTemple
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 4:26 pm

    Which is just another reason why we need to kick the UN out of the country. We should have literally packed their bags for them the second the Oil For Food scandal broke. But really, a long time before that. They are nothing but instigators, saboteurs, and general no-accounts.

  22. Adjoran
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 4:30 pm

    And those are their good qualities!

  23. Adjoran
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 4:33 pm

    Romney’s big advantage in this race is how lame the competition is, and how lame those who attack him are. 

    If this is what is considered an effective critique of him, he’s a shoo-in. 

    The sad part is his Achilles’ Heel is global warming/carbon emissions/cap-‘n’-tax, but no one raises that.  Instead, you try to nit-pick nuances to “prove” he’s a flip-flopper, and all you prove is your own limited ability to comprehend simple English.

  24. ThePaganTemple
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 8:14 pm

    I had a link a few months back that alleged that Bain Capital had a vested interest in alternative energy technologies through green companies they had invested in and that Romney’s support for alternative energy/cap and trade, etc., was likely based on that profit motive. But no one has ever brought that out that I know of, and now the newspaper article has been taken down some time ago.