Friday, January 29, 2016

Is Marco Rubio's Position -- Jesus + Torture -- the Default Position of the Republican Party?

As the the campaign heats up before Iowa, Marco Rubio is all-in for Our Lord Jesus Savior and vows to torture ISIS captives. A winning position?

Marco Rubio, almost gleefully, has repeated a line at the last two debates: "If we capture any of them alive, they are getting a one-way ticket to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and we are going to find out everything they know." It's followed by brisk applause.

It's now well established that torture, especially waterboarding, was extensively used during the Bush administration and was approved at the highest levels, meaning Bush and Cheney themselves.

It's well established that Barack Obama brought an immediate end to its use. Now, Marco Rubio -- and Donald Trump, to be clear -- promise to bring torture back. They speak openly about it.

Does that mean that torture is the default position of today's GOP? I think it does. Is openly professing your Christian faith a default position of today's GOP? You know the answer to that, as well. Compatible?

Looking a little further, I find that Chris Christie is in favor of waterboarding, and Jeb Bush doesn't want to "rule out" its use, even though the practice is internationally condemned as torture.

Apparently Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, to their credit, stand alone in their condemnation of torture.
President Barack Obama banned torture — including the use of waterboarding, sleep deprivation and sexual humiliation — with an executive order soon after taking office in 2009. A new president could have reversed Obama’s order, but last year Congress enshrined a torture ban into federal law: In June, the Senate voted 78-21 to approve an amendment, sponsored by Sens. John McCain and Dianne Feinstein, that became part of a defense spending bill Obama signed into law.

Cruz and another GOP presidential candidate, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, backed the amendment. Rubio missed the vote but opposed the measure, saying he didn’t want to deny future presidents “important tools for protecting the American people.” He also complained about “telegraphing to the enemy what interrogation techniques we will or won’t use.”
To round out the field:
Asked for his view about waterboarding on ABC’s “This Week” in November, neurosurgeon Ben Carson said, “There’s no such thing as political correctness when you’re fighting an enemy who wants to destroy you.” POLITICO could not find any statements on the subject by Ohio Gov. John Kasich, and his campaign did not respond to a query about his position.
A final note on Ted Cruz, from the Weekly Standard:
Supporters of the techniques have said the limited use of waterboarding and EITs were effective in providing critical intelligence for fighting against terrorist groups. One of the three people waterboarded under the CIA's program, for instance, was Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States.
The Cruz campaign has not yet responded to further request for comment on whether these techniques constitute the "torture" that Cruz opposes.
Slippery, Ted.

 The only thing that beats a bad guy without a dog is a good guy with a dog.

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