Friday, June 09, 2006

Is There an Honest Republican?

Republican Senator Rick Santorum is the latest to re-write quotes and pander to different audiences differently. Santorum adapted his 2005 book, "It Takes a Family," to an audio version and changed portions from the print version.

Will Bunch notes that in the print version, the Pennsylvania GOP senator decries the "weird socialization" that he believes that children get in public schools.

That quote is likely one of the many reasons that Santorum is losing by as many as 23 points in the polls to Democrat Casey -- after all, most voters send their kids to public schools and either a) don't think the socialization of learning to interact with a broad and often diverse community is "weird" or b) can't afford to school their kids any other way. In Santorum's case, the whole subject reminds people that his kids were attending an online cyberschool from his now $962,000 McMansion in Leesburg, Va., while working class taxpayers in Penn Hills, Pa. were paying for it. the audio version, Santorum simply changed the quote -- but not so much. As the Casey campaign is trumpeting today, the auto book now talks of "strange socialization."

There's also a section "in which he extolls the virtue of his kids' cyberschool [which] has simply vanished down the memory hole."

Now about that pandering. . .according to the Philadelphia Inquirer:
U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum seemed to be sending different messages to different audiences on his campaign Web site this week.

English-language visitors to encountered a home page filled with concern about the "amnesty-ridden proposal" the U.S. Senate adopted to deal with illegal immigration.

But a section of the site for Spanish readers made no mention of amnesty in its discourse on immigration. Nor did it refer to "rewarding criminal behavior" of illegal immigrants, as the English version did.

Jim Hoefler, a professor of political science at Dickinson College, noted: "The English version is kind of the Rick Santorum we know - no amnesty, law and order, tough guy. The Spanish version is a lot softer - we need to find a balance, that sort of approach."

Is it any wonder Al Franken titled his book Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them?