Keeping up with GOP flip-floppers

Can't track the ever-shifting stands of leading Republican presidential candidates? You need Right-Wing Facebook!


Joan Walsh
October 23, 2007 2:43AM (UTC)

One thing liberals often complain about -- besides the Democratic Party's inability to stop the war or the latest rights-shredding FISA bill -- is a desperate shortage of advocates with a sense of humor. Al Franken did his best for Air America, but he was no Rush Limbaugh. There's no Ann Coulter of the left, and no female liberal pundit I know aspires to fill that void. I love MoveOn, but the worst thing about the politically distracting "General Betray Us?" hellstorm might be the fact that it was shocking (to some) without being funny.

Maybe that's why I loved this Rightwing Facebook produced by People for the American Way's Right Wing Watch. (Found it through Matthew Yglesias.) In the wake of the weekend's carnival of conservatism -- Mitt Romney won the "Value Voters" straw poll! But he only got the votes of 10 percent of actual attendees! Rudy Giuliani hates gay marriage! But he promised to personally marry two gay friends he lived with for a while! -- the spoof has perfect pitch when it comes to the juvenile, reinventing-themselves antics of the GOP contenders. (Warning: Some familiarity with the way Facebook lets people narrate their comings and goings required even to gently chuckle.)

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Rudy Giuliani is wondering how he can fit 9/11 into a speech about agriculture policy.

Mitt Romney is shredding some old speeches.

Mitt Romney joined the group "Pro-Lifers."

Mitt Romney left the group "Pro-Choicers."

Mike Huckabee added "Entrusting the female body to the care of loving, paternal legislators" to his Interests.

Fred Thompson is loving playing the low-expectations game. Just be marginally awake, and you win!

Pat Robertson wrote on Rudy Giuliani's Wall:

"You're not fooling anyone, pal. The Right doesn't need Facebook to win -- it needs Faithbook! You can quote me on that."

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Rudy Giuliani added "God and lots of God-related things, like Bibles and stuff "to his Interests."

In "status updates," Fred Thompson is (what else?) napping.

I've read two great profiles in two days about Mitt Romney's shape-shifting -- Ken Silverstein's in Harper's, and Ryan Lizza's in the New Yorker -- and I can't sum up how surreal it all is any better than Yglesias, again: "The weird thing is that having flip-flopped and pandered a lot, Romney's campaign seems to feel almost liberated. At this point, it's not worth worrying that any particular thing will earn their candidate a reputation as a liar, a flip-flopper, and a panderer, because his stances on just a few high-profile issues show very clearly that he is a liar, is a flip-flopper, and is a panderer. Thus, they can feel free to pander and flip-flop on everything all the time."

Can this possibly work? It has so far. Oh look, Romney just updated his Right-Wing Facebook profile again:

"Mitt Romney is stoked that he won the Values Voter straw poll (as long as you don't look too closely...)."


Joan Walsh

Joan Walsh is the author of "What's the Matter With White People: Finding Our Way in the Next America."

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