Legislative incoherence

LEGISLATIVE INCOHERENCE…. For a while, I was keeping track of all of the bills John McCain opposed that he personally sponsored. It became daunting to keep up with — McCain, most notably during the Republican primaries, announced his opposition to lots of his own bills.

Yesterday, as Ron Chusid noted, McCain was on CNN and took this to the next level, announcing that he would have vetoed the same spending bills he’d voted to support.

BLITZER: Where would you, as president, draw the line between vetoing that kind of spending bill or accepting it because of the greater good that it also includes, as you decided in the bailout?

MCCAIN: I would have vetoed literally every spending bill, even those that I had voted for, if I were president of the United States.

Chusid noted, “This is even more ridiculous than John Kerry’s quote on voting for an appropriation before he voted against it. In Kerry’s case he was talking about two different bills…. McCain is talking about vetoing bills he actually voted for. He did have the opportunity to vote against them.”

I’m trying to wrap my head around McCain’s argument — the spending bills were bad, Bush should have vetoed them, so McCain voted for them.

Blitzer didn’t press the issue, but I have no idea what McCain’s talking about.

Washington Monthly - Donate today and your gift will be doubled!

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation

Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.