Republicans have been known to reinvent history while glorifying Ronald Reagan, but Sen. John McCain took it to a whole new level last night on FNC’s Hannity. McCain was trying to criticize Obama when he gave Reagan credit for the Prague Spring of 1968, while ignoring that Reagan wasn’t a national political figure then.
Here is the video courtesy of Think Progress:
McCain was arguing that Obama should be more like Reagan and support the protesters in Iran. He told Hannity, You and I are both students of history and we’ve seen this movie before. When Ronald Reagan stood up for the workers in Gdansk in Poland, when he stood up for the people of Czechoslovakia, in Prague Spring, and America did. And some good Democrats did, too.”
Reagan issued a statement in 1988 on the 20th anniversary of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia, which put an end to the Prague Spring, but I can find no original public statements by Reagan from 1968. McCain’s statements are a prime example of the Republican Party’s bending of history to suit their deification of Ronald Reagan.
Of course McCain was a POW in N. Vietnam in 1968, so his personal remembrance of those times would be understandably sketchy, but it has been decades since then, but he has had plenty of time to get his facts straight.
Ronald Reagan did not cause everything good to happen in the name of freedom during the 20th Century.
It is interesting though that many Republicans, not just McCain, are holding up to the Reagan standard. It speaks a great deal about President Obama’s talent that Republicans put him in the same league as Reagan, and Democrats compare him to F.D.R. Those two comparisons are some rare air.