OK, maybe he’s just pandering to the idiots in the Republican base… but jeez.
I don’t usually talk about politics here, but I just can’t help myself. So, instead of ranting, I will let John McCain speak for himself.
On vaccines and autism (2008):
At a town hall meeting Friday in Texas, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., declared that “thereâ€™s strong evidence” that thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative that was once in many childhood vaccines, is responsible for the increased diagnoses of autism in the U.S. — a position in stark contrast with the view of the medical establishment…
McCain said, per ABC News’ Bret Hovell, that “Itâ€™s indisputable that (autism) is on the rise amongst children, the question is whatâ€™s causing it. And we go back and forth and thereâ€™s strong evidence that indicates that itâ€™s got to do with a preservative in vaccines.”
On evolution (2007):
Friday at noon in Seattle, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., will speak at a luncheon event being co-presented by the Discovery Institute — the controversial organization that promotes intelligent design theory and combats Darwinism…
Critics say that McCain’s position on teaching intelligent design in schools is not easy to decipher.
In 2005, he told the Arizona Star, “I think that there has to be all points of view presented. But they’ve got to be thoroughly presented. So to say that you can only teach one line of thinking â€¦ or one belief on how people and the world was created I think there’s nothing wrong with teaching different schools of thought.”
Had enough? We’re not done yet. This takes the cake.
On AIDS and condoms (2007):
Reporter: “Should U.S. taxpayer money go to places like Africa to fund contraception to prevent AIDS?”
Mr. McCain: “Well I think itâ€™s a combination. The guy I really respect on this is Dr. Coburn. He believes â€“ and I was just reading the thing he wroteâ€“ that you should do what you can to encourage abstinence where there is going to be sexual activity. Where that doesnâ€™t succeed, than he thinks that we should employ contraceptives as well. But I agree with him that the first priority is on abstinence. I look to people like Dr. Coburn. Iâ€™m not very wise on it.”
(Mr. McCain turns to take a question on Iraq, but a moment later looks back to the reporter who asked him about AIDS.)
Mr. McCain: “I havenâ€™t thought about it. Before I give you an answer, let me think about. Let me think about it a little bit because I never got a question about it before. I donâ€™t know if I would use taxpayersâ€™ money for it.”
Q: “What about grants for sex education in the United States? Should they include instructions about using contraceptives? Or should it be Bushâ€™s policy, which is just abstinence?”
Mr. McCain: (Long pause) “Ahhh. I think I support the presidentâ€™s policy.”
Q: “So no contraception, no counseling on contraception. Just abstinence. Do you think contraceptives help stop the spread of HIV?”
Mr. McCain: (Long pause) “Youâ€™ve stumped me.”
Q: “I mean, I think youâ€™d probably agree it probably does help stop it?”
Mr. McCain: (Laughs) “Are we on the Straight Talk express? Iâ€™m not informed enough on it. Let me find out. You know, Iâ€™m sure Iâ€™ve taken a position on it on the past. I have to find out what my position was. Brian, would you find out what my position is on contraception â€“ Iâ€™m sure Iâ€™m opposed to government spending on it, Iâ€™m sure I support the presidentâ€™s policies on it.”
Q: “But you would agree that condoms do stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. Would you say: â€˜No, weâ€™re not going to distribute them,â€™ knowing that?”
Mr. McCain: (Twelve-second pause) “Get me Coburnâ€™s thing, ask Weaver to get me Coburnâ€™s paper that he just gave me in the last couple of days. Iâ€™ve never gotten into these issues before.”
Holy crap. This guy is running for President? Don’t candidates have to pass
junior high middle school or something?
Hat tip to DemFromCT at DailyKos.
Since I’m already breaking my own rule and talking politics, make sure to check out this story from Phil Plait over at Bad Astronomy:
My very good friend Lt. Colonel Hal Bidlack is running for Congress.
Heâ€™s running for a seat in the House of Representatives for Coloradoâ€™s 5th District. This is Colorado Springs, home to conservative icons like the Air Force Academy and (shudder) Focus on the Family. This is not a stereotypically progressive place.
Halâ€™s running as a Democrat. And I think he can win…
I donâ€™t live in Coloradoâ€™s 5th District, so I canâ€™t vote for Hal. If you do live there, I encourage you to investigate the issues and vote as you see fit.
But if you donâ€™t live there, you can still help put a good man â€” one of the few â€” into Congress. If you are an American citizen, please consider donating to Halâ€™s campaign fund. You know how very rarely I ask for something like this, so I hope you understand how important this is.
I heard Hal speak at TAM a couple of years ago and Colorado can definitely use his voice, especially in Colorado Springs, the seat of religious idiocy in our state.