the McCain lobbyist scandal - Page 5 - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Lypton Village > Free Your Mind > Free Your Mind Archive
Click Here to Login
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 02-22-2008, 04:54 PM   #81
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
[q]The McCain World Rift
By DAVID BROOKS

The staff of the McCain campaign had a rude awakening last Jan. 25th. They opened The Washington Post and found a front-page story linking McCain’s campaign manager, Rick Davis, to the Russian aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska. Who, some wondered, was feeding damaging information about Davis to the press?

Speculation inevitably settled, as it must in McCain World, upon John Weaver. For nearly a decade, stories about the inner workings of the McCain apparatus inevitably involved the Weaver-Davis rivalry. These two McCain advisers share a mutual hatred, one McCainiac told me Thursday, that is total, absolute and blinding.

The tensions, which divided the McCain presidential campaign until Weaver was forced out last summer, exist on many levels. First of all, there is a personal contest for the attention and love of John McCain. But there are broader issues as well.

Davis is a creature of the political mainstream. He is even-tempered and charming. He is a lobbyist and a friend of lobbyists. He is a good manager. In policy terms, his tastes tend toward the Republican center.

Weaver is a renegade. He has a darker personality. He’s not a member of elite Washington circles and resented the way McCain would occasionally get pulled into them. Weaver is a less effective bureaucrat, but his policy instincts are more daring and independent.

The Davis-Weaver rivalry has lasted for so long because John McCain has a foot in each camp. McCain is, on one level, a figure of the Washington mainstream. He admires Alan Greenspan and Henry Kissinger. He appreciates a steady manager like Davis.

But McCain is also a renegade and a romantic. He loves tilting at the establishment and shaking things up. He loves books and movies in which the hero dies at the end while serving a noble, if lost, cause. He loves the insurgent/band-of-brothers ethos that Weaver exudes.

McCain was loyal to each camp in a house divided. But the poisons emanating from the rift have spread outward. They are the background for the article my colleagues at The New York Times published Thursday.

At the core of that article that began on the front page are two anonymous sources. These sources, according to the article, say they confronted McCain in 1999 with their concerns that he was risking his career by interacting with Vicki Iseman. As a columnist, I’m an independent operator, speaking for myself alone. I have no idea who those sources are. But they are bound to come from the inner circle of the McCain universe. The number of people who could credibly claim to have had a meeting like that with McCain in early 1999 is vanishingly small. I count a small handful of associates with that stature, including Davis and Weaver. There is nobody in that tight circle unaffected by the hostilities that emanate from the rift.

Thursday, as McCain was fervently and completely denying the allegations of an affair with Iseman, people in all quarters of the McCain universe were vehemently denying it, too. But even on this embattled day, they broke down into rival camps over the identity of the sources.

Many in the Davis camp argued Thursday that Weaver must be the chief anonymous source, and that he had roped in one other confederate. He’s had a hard life, they said, and is driven by demons.

Weaver countered by telling reporters that he retains enormous affection for McCain and desperately wants him to become president. Moreover, Weaver had been trying to get back into the fold. There is no way he would be an anonymous source against McCain. Some closer to Weaver theorized that the sources must be former McCain campaign elders from 2000 who worked for rival campaigns in 2008.

I checked that possibility out, and it doesn’t hold water. But while calling around to a dozen senior McCain friends and advisers Thursday, what struck me was the enormous tragedy of the rift. They all love McCain. They all say it is absurd to think he abused his power in the way that is alleged. But the rift is like some primal sore. It affected every conversation I had Thursday, as it has infected McCain efforts again and again over the past many years.

At his press conference Thursday, McCain went all-in. He didn’t just say he didn’t remember a meeting about Iseman. He said there was no meeting. If it turns out that there is evidence of an affair and a meeting, then his presidential hopes will be over. If no evidence surfaces, his campaign will go on and it will be clear that there were members of his old inner circle consumed by viciousness and mendaciousness.

But lingering over everything is the bitterness of the rift, which has caused duplicity and anger to seep into the campaign of this fine man. The poisons have yet to be drained. [/q]
__________________

Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 04:55 PM   #82
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
[q]

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/21/bu...gewanted=print

Q. I must say that the McCain article left me embarrassed for your paper. So little substance, but trumpeted prominently as though you somehow had the goods on him or were raising burning questions. It makes it look like your reporters or editors had an ax to grind. I hope they didn't. Question: Do you read the coverage of your coverage? Did you see the piece at slate.com ridiculing your paper for this? Doesn't it smart?

— Brian Mullaney

A. I think we all expected the reaction to be intense. We knew from our experience last year, when word leaked out we were pursuing this story, that Senator McCain's operatives would set out to change the subject by making the story about The New York Times rather than about their candidate. That's a time-honored tactic for dealing with potentially damaging news stories. We knew some readers would disagree with our decision to publish this information. After all, we wrestled with our own doubts on that score. We anticipated that it would provoke at least a brief media firestorm — and that our efforts to put Mr. McCain's relationship with a lobbyist in a bigger context would probably get lost in the retelling.

Personally, I was surprised by the volume of the reaction (including more than 2,400 reader comments posted on our Web site). I was surprised by how lopsided the opinion was against our decision, with readers who described themselves as independents and Democrats joining Republicans in defending Mr. McCain from what they saw as a cheap shot.

And, frankly, I was a little surprised by how few readers saw what was, to us, the larger point of the story. Perhaps here, at the outset of this conversation, is a good point to state as clearly as possible our purpose in publishing.

For a year or so, in addition to pieces on issues, candidate interviews, investigations of their business dealings, polling and reporting from the campaign trail, we have been running this series called "The Long Run." It is a kind of serial biography of the candidates. We pick key events or themes or questions about a candidate's life that reflect on his or her character and qualifications. (They are all archived here.)

These profiles aim to include a mixture of new material and previously known material looked at fresh. Previous installments on Senator McCain have dealt with his family and with his bare-knuckle primary battle against George Bush in South Carolina in 2000.

Perhaps the defining narrative of Senator McCain's career is his long, determined recovery from scandal. Elected to public office as a national hero, the senator was tainted by revelations that he had done favors for an unsavory banker he considered a friend. It was — as he describes it in his memoirs — a searing humiliation from which he never recovered. He rebuilt his career and his reputation by becoming a champion of clean government, a critic of lobbyists and the vested-interest money that courses through American politics. More than most politicians, he was keenly aware that, as he put it in one of his books, "questions of honor are raised as much by appearances as by reality in politics."

The point of this "Long Run" installment was that, according to people who know him well, this man who prizes his honor above all things and who appreciates the importance of appearances also has a history of being sometimes careless about the appearance of impropriety, about his reputation. The story cites several examples, and quotes friends and admirers talking of this apparent contradiction in his character. That is why some members of his staff were so alarmed by the appearance of his relationship with Ms. Iseman. And that, it seemed (and still seems) to us, was something our readers would want to know about a man who aspires to be president.

Clearly, many of you did not agree.

Yes, Mr. Mullaney, I read the commentary you refer to on slate.com. I hope you'll take a look at another piece on slate.com, by Jack Shafer, which defends us. "The evidence the paper provides more than adequately establishes that McCain remains a better preacher about ethics, standards, appearances, and special interest conflicts than he is a practitioner, something voters should consider before punching the ballot for him," is Shafer's conclusion. You can probably guess which commentary I liked better.

Q. Do you have substantiation in the form of hotel info, cell phone info, airplane manifests, etc., more than just annonymous sources. Anything else?

— George Prozan

Q. Gabriel Sherman's New Republic piece about your investigation stated that "reporters investigating the story ... believed they had nailed it." What did you believe you had "nailed"? Was it that you had sufficient evidence to imply that Senator John McCain was having an affair with Vicki Iseman? Was it that Ms. Iseman had bought McCain's votes and influence? Was it that McCain is not as morally righteous as he claims to be?

— Zac Farber

A. This batch of questions reflects reader concern over material in the story about the intervention of top McCain advisers who were convinced that Senator McCain's relationship with the lobbyist, Vicki Iseman, had become romantic.

Our reporting team learned from several sources that aides to Senator McCain had become concerned that he was having too much contact with Ms. Iseman. Their concern, which became so heightened that they confronted Senator McCain, was triggered by several issues. One was that Ms. Iseman is a lobbyist with clients who have vital business before the Senate commerce committee, of which Mr. McCain was chairman. Another was that she had been talking about her ties to him. Another was that she was showing up frequently in his office, at fund-raisers and other occasions, including a flight on a client's corporate jet. And they were also concerned because they believed the relationship between the senator and Ms. Iseman had become romantic.

We believed it was vital for the story to accurately reflect the range of concerns shared by our sources. If they had told us that their concerns stemmed only from Ms. Iseman's lobbying work, this is what the published story would have said. But this was not the case. The Washington Post published a similar story after we posted the Times story on our Web site, and theirs reported that the aides who confronted Senator McCain were concerned about her being a lobbyist. It made no mention of romance. Obviously, I have no knowledge of who The Post's sources were and what they said. I believe The Post story is, like ours, an accurate reflection of what sources told Post reporters.

If the editors had summarily decided to edit out the issue of romance, because of possible qualms over "sexual innuendo" or some of the others issues cited in the reader questions, our story would not have been a complete and accurate reflection of what our sources told our reporters. The editors and the reporting team believed it was important for readers to know what could have concerned top advisers so much that they confronted their boss. We believe the story did this fairly and accurately, giving readers as much information as we could.

Documents are always useful in reporting, but they are not required. The Times story was not about a romantic relationship. It was about a senator who had been embroiled in scandal, then rebuilt his career as a reformer and concern among his aides that his relationship with Ms. Iseman was putting that career at risk.

Certainly the story in no way said or suggested that women in male-dominated professions create the perception of impropriety. [/q]
__________________

Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:00 PM   #83
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
So its disgruntled employees? Still waiting for something to prove anything wrong has been done.
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:02 PM   #84
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
So its disgruntled employees? Still waiting for something to prove anything wrong has been done.


newspapers are not lawsuits.

here is the title of the article:

[q]"For McCain, Self-Confidence on Ethics Poses Its Own Risk"[/q]
Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:12 PM   #85
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
and the Slate article boils it down:

[q]That McCain may have voted against the interests of Iseman's clients is no vindication. Her extreme proximity to a self-styled political ethicist is.

Consider these undisputed points reported by the Times:

McCain flew on the corporate jet of an Iseman client who was seeking the senator's support. Iseman, who is a partner at the firm Alcalde & Fay, "represented telecommunications companies for whom Mr. McCain's commerce committee was pivotal. Her clients contributed tens of thousands of dollars to his campaigns." The paper also reports that "Mr. McCain and Ms. Iseman attended a small fund-raising dinner with several clients at the Miami-area home of a cruise-line executive and then flew back to Washington along with a campaign aide on the corporate jet of one of her clients, Paxson Communications." Two former McCain associates anonymously tell the paper that they confronted McCain over his relationship with Iseman because they thought it was putting his career and campaign at risk. Former top McCain strategist John Weaver sent an e-mail about his Iseman worries. [/q]
Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:28 PM   #86
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
SO she had access to him. The teacher's unions ect. have access too along with countless other representatives of the interests of the citizenry.

What has he done that is wrong? Nothing.
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:34 PM   #87
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
And here is why I would URGE those on the left to hold the press to standards even when it does not apply to "their guy"

[Q]Many Democrats are glorying and gloating over the NYTimes story on McCain. Some after taking a moment, realize this story is troubling. Yglesias writes:

[T]hinking more clearly past my loathing of John McCain, the Times's effort to substitute innuendo for making a straightforward true or false assertion seems like a pretty shameful attempt to set up a Kaus-like presumption of guilt [Referencing Mickey's attempt to legitimize the "Edwards is having an affair" stories].

If they have reporting they're willing to stand behind of a McCain-Iseman affair, they should publish it. And if, as seems to be the case, they don't have the reporting, then they shouldn't write the story.

Good for Matt. But if Democrats take a moment, they will realize this development is not good at all. I mention one word to you - Rezko. I discuss on the flip.


Both Jeralyn and I have stated repeatedly that Rezko is a nonissue for Obama as he did nothing remotely wrong. But a Media likely to come under bitter attack from the Right Wing Noise Machine for this McCain story is not necessarily going to take its cues from us.

The Rezko trial starts March 3:
Rezko is accused of demanding kickbacks from companies seeking state business under Gov. Blagojevich, the government alleges. In one case, Rezko allegedly tried to shake down an investment firm trying to land state pension work for $1.5 million in campaign contributions for the governor.

To assuage the outrage from the Right, I expect the Media to prominently cover Obama's ties to Rezko, even though Obama did nothing wrong.

No, this McCain story is NOT a good development for Democrats, imo.

[/Q]

http://www.talkleft.com/story/2008/2/21/11420/7987
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 06:44 PM   #88
Blue Crack Addict
 
anitram's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: NY
Posts: 18,918
Local Time: 05:33 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
And here is why I would URGE those on the left to hold the press to standards even when it does not apply to "their guy"
Why urging those on the left to hold the NYT to higher standards? The NYT who published the load of crap that was Judy Miller's journalistic diarrhea? I'm not sure they have been held in high esteem on the "left" for some time.

I think this will end up being a non-story much like the "plagiarism" thing which was a non-story. And it emphasizes how tone deaf a lot of people have become to the pulse of the nation. It's as if people don't understand that the average Joe out there doesn't give a shit about lobbyists (because we all know politicians lie) nor about the fine intricacies of a phrase in a speech. So wasting time publishing things like this is not really going to do anything concrete to the race, IMO. And that's regardless of whether the allegations are true.
anitram is offline  
Old 02-22-2008, 07:01 PM   #89
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
I am not going to argue the plagiarism story in this thread. The Massachusetts governor has now been caught lying about it for Obama. Hillary hjad the point of the night last night.

As for my post, there is a potential scandal heading Obama's way. If the press is not held to standards, then Obama is just as open to "inferred" scandal as anyone else. The fact that there are those on the left geefully happy that this is happening to McCain shows that once again, we could care less unless it happens to our guy.
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 06:21 AM   #90
Rock n' Roll Doggie
Band-aid
 
maycocksean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: The Most Important State in the Union
Posts: 4,892
Local Time: 04:33 AM
^I expect a story like this will break about Obama eventually.
maycocksean is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 09:54 AM   #91
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
SO she had access to him. The teacher's unions ect. have access too along with countless other representatives of the interests of the citizenry.

What has he done that is wrong? Nothing.


it's not the access, it's the level of access that was so unusual it caused many close to McCain to panic.

and it's not that he's done anything wrong, it's that he's treading on thin ice holding himself up as a paragon of political virtue.
Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 09:59 AM   #92
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox

As for my post, there is a potential scandal heading Obama's way. If the press is not held to standards, then Obama is just as open to "inferred" scandal as anyone else. The fact that there are those on the left geefully happy that this is happening to McCain shows that once again, we could care less unless it happens to our guy.


and i guess i'm a little bit sad that any interest in a subject or topic is automatically read as "glee" simply because it is happening to the other side.

i find this story interesting on many levels, not least because i live in DC and know people who both work on the Hill and on K Street.

i also found it interesting how the "base" smelled some blood in the water, which only amplified their quite audible dissatisfaction with McCain, and the fact that Romeny has merely "suspended" his campaign.

but to make it sound as if these McCain stories are giving me a hard on ... not even close.
Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:05 AM   #93
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
You are ususally someone I believe looks at things factually. In this case, I am surprised by your posts.

Obama's day will come. I will be there for him too unless there are facts that prove otherwise.
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:06 AM   #94
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
i found this article and the articles and discussion surrounding it the most illustrative look into the "real" McCain that's come since he's been on the political radar.

Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:20 AM   #95
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
I guess I do not see his relationship as a problem. He is operating in a system in which groups of people have hired lobbyists to represent their interests. The reality is, the average Joe doe not have access to the politicians to voice concerns ect, and that is why the system is what it is. So her having access does not bother me, at all. If you look at this man's record, he has bucked the party, bucked special interests, bucked popular opinion when he feels it is in the better interests of the country. And that record, stands for what it is.

As for this 'scandal". I believe that there was a rift within his advisors. I believe that there were firings and terminations that have resulted in this coming to light in a manner that is lacking in substance. It brings out the juiciness of the scandal without there being evidence of a scandal. I find it wrong and offensive, that the article sat, sat, was rewritten three times, sat again, and was published because there was an article being published about the rift it was causing in their paper. It was not published because it was newsworthy.

That said, like with Obama, if there is evidence of wrong doing and him using his political influence inappropriately, then I will be so disappointed.

I have been disappointed by his decisions and politics before, but I can handle that. I disagreed with him on Iraq, only to find that he very well has been correct about stabilizing the situation there. I disagreed with him on campaign finance, but, I find the fact that he was opposed to his party on this, refreshing.

Enough - I am excited for Obama - McCain. Two very different candidates. It should be fun.
Dreadsox is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:25 AM   #96
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tempe, Az USA
Posts: 12,856
Local Time: 02:33 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511




and the fact that Romeny has merely "suspended" his campaign.

.
you're really worried about this, huh?
diamond is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 11:30 AM   #97
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Irvine511's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 33,717
Local Time: 05:33 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by diamond


you're really worried about this, huh?


i think it would be great if he tried to come back to life.

he'd be destroyed by Obama and/or Clinton.

destroyed.
Irvine511 is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 05:24 PM   #98
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tempe, Az USA
Posts: 12,856
Local Time: 02:33 AM
you do not know Romney or his character that well apparently.

dbs
diamond is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:01 PM   #99
Blue Crack Supplier
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 30,343
Local Time: 04:33 AM
Well, he's willing to change all of his positions on a dime just to get a nomination. What does that tell you about his character?
phillyfan26 is offline  
Old 02-23-2008, 10:33 PM   #100
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 10,885
Local Time: 04:33 AM
__________________

Dreadsox is offline  
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:33 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com
×