According to Joel Skousen's World Affairs Brief, February 1, 2008, "[John McCain] used nepotism to get ahead: When he was rejected by the National War College, he used his father's contacts with the Secretary of the Navy to make them reconsider." Skousen also notes that "McCain cheated on his first wife after she had a severe accident. He then divorced her and married his multi-millionaire mistress, whose daddy bought McCain a spot in the Congress."They can torture themselves over McCain's hypocrisy on that issue while burying their heads in the sand from the real issue raised in the recent NY Times article. Glen Greenwald gets straight to the heart of the very real McCain issue, the issue that the GOP is avoiding like a neoconservative plague:
It has also never been explained why the son and grandson of Navy admirals would not rise to the rank of Admiral himself. (He exited the Navy as a Captain.) Was it his numerous adulterous affairs or his violent temper? Or both?
John McCain's biographer Robert Timberg chronicles McCain's numerous sexual affairs with subordinates both when he was an Executive Officer and later Squadron Commander. Obviously, such fraternization is a violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Au contraire, my fuzzy, feathery pet neocons:
In issuing a very specific, point-by-point denial of the NYT story, McCain specifically denied that he ever talked to Paxson's CEO, Lowell Paxson (or any other Paxson representative) about this matter:No representative of Paxson or Alcalde and Fay discussed with Senator McCain the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proceeding. . . . No representative of Paxson or Alcalde and Fay personally asked Senator McCain to send a letter to the FCC regarding this proceeding.
But Newsweek's Mike Isikoff today obtained (or was given) the transcripts of deposition testimony which McCain himself gave under oath several years ago in litigation over the constitutionality of McCain-Feingold. In that testimony, McCain repeatedly and unequivocally stated the opposite of what he said in this week's NYT denial: namely, that he had unquestionably spoken with Paxson himself over the pending FCC matter:I'll let the GOP cry over whether or not he cheated on his second wife, the lobbying mistress he left his first wife for after repeatedly cheating on her, and whether or not he married her for her money and used her to further his career ambitions... Most of the left could care less about McCain's spousal issues. It is a minor issue, and trivial to a certain degree. It is all just a shield for the right to try deflect from and avoid the lobbying allegations. Never mind the hypocrisy concerning other lobbying aspects of his dubious campaign:"I was contacted by Mr. Paxson on this issue," McCain said in the Sept. 25, 2002, deposition obtained by NEWSWEEK. "He wanted their approval very bad for purposes of his business. I believe that Mr. Paxson had a legitimate complaint."It's hard to imagine how there could be a clearer contradiction in McCain's statements than (a) "I'm sure I spoke to [Paxson]" and (b) "No representative of Paxson or Alcalde and Fay discussed with Senator McCain the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proceeding."
While McCain said "I don't recall" if he ever directly spoke to the firm's lobbyist about the issue -- an apparent reference to Iseman, though she is not named -- "I'm sure I spoke to [Paxson]."
Set aside the issue of the nature of his relationship with Iseman, and you have the undeniable conflict of McCain, the chest-beating reformer, being so undeniably close to lobbyists. That, many have pointed out, is the real story. The man who's absurdly proclaimed that "I’m the only one the special interests don’t give any money to" is surrounded by lobbyists.I'm not playing into John McCain's supporters hands and deflecting from the real issues of lying about unethical lobbyist connections because...
I'm Not Your Stepping Stone!
Certainly not when all John McCain has to offer is less jobs, and MORE WAR!
[update] Via MSNBC, McCain says he won't discuss his Lobbyist weaknesses any further:
"I don't have any more comment about this issue. I had a press conference yesterday morning, and I answered every question," McCain said.After omitting the fact that he lied at that press conference yesterday, McCain then goes on to exactly what he said he wouldn't do: Discuss it further:
"I'm moving on. I'm talking about the issues and the challenges of America and the big issues that Americans are concerned about. I addressed the issue and addressed every question that was addressed to me.
"I do not intend to discuss it further," he told reporters.
"I square it one way," McCain said. "The right to represent interests or groups of Americans is a constitutional right. There are people that represent firemen, civil servants, retirees, and those people are legitimate representatives of a variety of interests in America.WOOOHOOO! The old "Constitutionally protected" argument from a candidate that regularly ignores and tramples on The Constitution when it comes to your rights and mine. When McCain says he isn't going to talk about it anymore... He is really just praying that we will stop asking and digging on it. Good luck on that one!
[update deux] Crooks and Liars chronicles some of the lies from McCain:
So much for the Straight talk express. He’s been trying to spin the influence that Ms. Iseman had on him overall and specifically regarding the Paxson deal. McCain’s camp had this to say:
Statements from McCain’s office said Iseman met only with staff and indicated that a staff member was involved in drafting and sending the letter. Thursday’s statement went to lengths to say why McCain could not have met with Paxson.
There’s a slight problem with that. Bud Paxson basically called McCain a liar.
Broadcaster Lowell “Bud” Paxson yesterday contradicted statements from Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign that the senator did not meet with Paxson or his lobbyist before sending two controversial letters to the Federal Communications Commission on Paxson’s behalf.
Paxson said he talked with McCain in his Washington office several weeks before the Arizona Republican wrote the letters in 1999 to the FCC urging a rapid decision on Paxson’s quest to acquire a Pittsburgh television station.
And what about Vicki Iseman, you know, the lobbyist that McCain called a “friend?”
Paxson also recalled that his lobbyist, Vicki Iseman, likely attended the meeting in McCain’s office and that Iseman helped arrange the meeting. “Was Vicki there? Probably,” Paxson said in an interview with The Washington Post yesterday. “The woman was a professional. She was good. She could get us meetings.”
Oh yes! There's still more more lies and inconsistencies from McCain...
[update trois] Denis Horgan sums up the inconsistancies of McCain on the lobbyists well:
Snow is sunshine. The moon is Mars. What’s the difference? How is the truth relevant?
Oh, yes. We need four more years of this.