Flip-Floppers See Light—Or Just Want Job

Romney and Kerry stand in long line of political mind-changing
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 18, 2007 8:26 AM CDT

(Newser) – Maybe Mitt Romney and John Kerry should hold their flip-flopping heads high: Changes of mind have furthered the causes of abolition and civil rights over the centuries. Ronald Reagan defiantly claimed his biggest reversal—promising feet “in concrete” about raising taxes, then singing “the sound of concrete cracking” when he hiked them—but flip-floppers are often less than pure.

LBJ had eyes firmly set on the White House when he broke with his white Southern past to broker the 1957 Civil Rights Act, says Time’s Richard Brookhiser. For some politicians though, hypocrisy is the unfortunate part: Sixth president John Quincy Adams rose to the top through favors of Southerners—and then dedicated his post-White House years to fighting slavery.