In an interview with Yahoo News, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina defended Bush-era spying and torture, arguing that George W. Bush’s policies kept America safe. Fiorina apparently is trying to position herself as the presidential candidate most willing to bring back the disastrous Bush-Cheney foreign policy, even though George W. Bush’s brother, Jeb Bush is also trying to stake out that claim.
Fiorina is trying to look tough on foreign policy, although it is not clear that following in George W. Bush’s clumsy footsteps is the best way to do that. Fiorina followed GOP revisionist history by arguing that Bush kept us safe and she defended torture by stating:
I believe that all of the evidence is very clear — that waterboarding was used in a very small handful of cases [and] was supervised by medical personnel in every one of those cases. And I also believe that waterboarding was used when there was no other way to get information that was necessary.
Of course, Fiorina’s statement contradicts the evidence. The Senate Intelligence Committee found that “the use of the CIA’s enhanced interrogation techniques was not an effective means of obtaining accurate information or gaining detainee cooperation”. “Enhanced interrogation techniques” like waterboarding, beatings, and rectal feeding, failed to produce intelligence that was useful for foiling terrorist plots, according to the Senate report.
While Fiorina was head of Hewlett-Packard she made regular visits to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, and she assisted the NSA in implementing their controversial warrantless wiretap program to spy on the American people. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that she remains a staunch defender of the CIA-sponsored torture committed while George W. Bush was in the White House.
Carly Fiorina would be a truly ironic choice for anti-government conservatives to back in the 2016 presidential race, as she is an outspoken cheerleader for national security state surveillance and a defender of government sponsored torture. However, since conservative voters seem willing to hold contradictory positions that call for shrinking the federal government, while simultaneously demanding that the government increase its reach, Fiorina will probably continue to poll well in the Republican field.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.