Joel Award: John McCain
It is time to give out the Joel Award. The award goes any celebrity, pundit, blogger or politician that purposely contradicts himself or herself. Sen. John McCain is a classic flip-flopper. Steve Benen made a list on McCain waffling on the issues. The latest flip flop is McCain's change of heart on the exchange of prisoners with the Taliban. February 18, McCain told Anderson Cooper that he would support the exchange of American soldiers in exchange for Taliban fighters, depending on the details. McCain even stressed he may even support the release of "hard-core" Taliban fighters.
Well, at that time the proposal was that they would release -- Taliban, some of them really hard-core, particularly five really hard-core Taliban leaders, as a confidence- building measure. Now this idea is for an exchange of prisoners for our American fighting man. I would be inclined to support such a thing depending on a lot of the details.McCain changed his tune after the Pentagon negotiated the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. Conservatives started bashing President Barack Obama for the prisoner exchange. McCain immediately ran for cover. McCain said this on CNN on June 3.
MCCAIN: Well, we were never told there would be an exchange here of Sergeant Bergdahl for five Taliban. We told they were considering, and we steadfastly, both Republican and Democrats, rejected the notion that they were going to release some of these Taliban in exchange for, "confidence building measures" so that negotiations could continue. What we were briefed on was an entirely different scenario from the one that took place. Look, I'm not one who believes that Congress should bind the hands of the president particularly as commander-in-chief. That's not my problem. My problem is, what we did in exchange, which could put the lives of American servicemen and women in grave danger in the future, unless you believe that this conflict is over and that the Taliban and Al Qaeda have stop wanting to destroy America and repeat of 9/11, then, fine. But they've not, and they're not, and they are growing, despite what the administration says.Back in February McCain was "inclined to support" the release of "hard-core" Taliban fighters. That was before Fox News went on a rampage over the prisoner swap for Sgt. Bergdahl. You can see the Fox News attacks here and here. Shepard Smith was one voice of reason. When Fox News roars John McCain trembles.