Having It Both Ways

AS America's campaign-before-the-campaign for the 1996 election escalates, let's clarify one matter:

It's demagoguery for a politician to speak out of both sides of his/her mouth on an issue. But it may be honorable - even courageous - for a politician to change positions on an issue over time.

Save us from leaders who are so rigidly manacled to an ideology that they can't change when circumstances, (and the logic of a policy) change.

In this budget-cutting era, the politician who favors careful trimming of a program he has championed deserves praise, not trashing for inconsistency.

But one who brags he favors cutting the Pentagon budget, then votes to restore an unwanted base or weapons system gets the raspberry.

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