Is flip flopping so terrible?

Is flip flopping so terrible?

I don’t mind flip-floppers. I know, I’m condoning the biggest sin in American politics, but before you toss this paper and your neighbor’s away in a flurry of disbelief, think about what it really means for a politician to stick with his or her stances religiously.

Of course, we all remember the most heralded flip-flopper of the decade: John Kerry. John Kerry didn’t lose just because of his stances on immigration, the economy, or Iraq; he lost in part because Americans can’t stand the thought of a politician who changes his mind on any issue.


So now, as every major news network tells me, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are engaged in a fierce cage match, and most of their “jabs” and “low blows” come from the fact that each candidate is attempting to brand the other as a flip-flopper. Obama is whining about Clinton’s former stance on the harmful North American Free Trade Agreement, and Clinton is complaining about Obama’s alterations to his stances on foreign policy among other issues.

If the Democratic Party truly wants to win this election, both candidates need to stop labeling each other as flip-floppers; we’ve seen what happens to flip-floppers in the general election already. Unfortunately, a politician’s ability to adapt and be flexible is less important to Americans than a politician’s stubbornness.

Voters shouldn’t care as much as they do when candidates call each other flip-floppers, because we have also seen what it is like to have a stubborn president. President Bush will not break his father’s “no new taxes” pledge to bring us out of our $9 trillion debt, he has just recently recognized global warming as a problem and still hasn’t done anything about it, and he almost never admits that he’s wrong, especially on the horribly planned Iraq war.

 Andy Lesser, staff writer