Gephardt Agonistes

Gephardt's ill-advised declaration that he'd overturn Supreme Court decisions he didn't like seems to be dogging him, and with his latest statements we get a glimpse into his inner struggle between wanting people to only think he's a fool, and his unconscious desire to open his mouth and remove all doubt.

Eugene Volokh compares what he said then with what he's saying now, concluding:

I don't want to overstate the importance of this: Other politicians have done similar things, and that's the way Presidential races go. But when these things happen, people should point them out, and should point out when the candidate's defense is ultimately not terribly persuasive. Doubtless some people may still like Gephardt's politics and character enough to conclude that he's the best candidate -- but I think that this sort of overpromising (whether done deliberately, or on the spur of the moment in a "me-too" gesture following Dennis Kucinich's similar statement) does cast at least a bit of doubt on the candidate's qualities.


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