The following is a GRE sentence completion question.
The most striking thing about the politician is how often his politics have been (i)_____rather than ideological, as he adapts his political positions at any particular moment to the political realities that constrain him. He does not, however, piously (ii)_____political principles only to betray them in practice. Rather, he attempts in subtle ways to balance his political self-interest with a (iii)_____, viewing himself as an instrument of some unchanging higher purpose.
a. quixotic, brandish, thoroughgoing pragmatism
b. strategic, brandish, deeply felt moral code (correct answer)
c. self-righteous, flout, deeply felt moral code
d. self-righteous, brandish, profound cynicism
e. strategic, follow, profound cynicism
I am able to get how strategic and deeply felt moral code fits in the first and third blank but confused about the second blank. What is the intention behind choosing brandish? Why not follow or flout?