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McCain Picks Up John Edwards's Song

By Juliet Eilperin
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Now that former North Carolina senator John Edwards has exited the presidential race, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is seizing the opening -- on the music front, that is.

At a rally here in the Montgomery Bell Academy's Brownlee O. Currey Gymnasium, the speakers blasted "Our Country," the John Mellencamp song that had served as the hallmark of Edwards's campaign events.

Jamie Hindmon, a senior at the University of Memphis who backs McCain, said it makes all the sense in the world to appropriate a Democratic populist's tune.

"If Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama can steal his ideas after he dropped out of the race, John McCain can steal his song," she quipped.

The fact that McCain choice to speak at Montgomery Bell Academy -- which happens to be former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson's alma mater -- stirred speculation that Thompson would endorse McCain here, or at least loan him a song or two. But while former Tennessee senator Howard Baker joined McCain at the rally, Thompson was nowhere to be seen. Still, McCain paid homage to his friend.

"Everybody, including Fred Thompson, can be very proud of the campaign he ran for president of the United States," McCain said. "He's a true son of Tennessee, and you can be very proud of Fred Thompson."

Being the front-runner, however, may be going to McCain's head. Detailing the primary wins he's racked up over the past month, the senator told the crowd of several hundred supporters, "We've won in Tennessee -- excuse me, not yet."

And rest assured, McCain hasn't entirely abandoned his musical roots for political opportunism: he kept the "Rocky" theme and ABBA's "Take a Chance on Me" in the mix today. Still, he pandered to the audience at the end by concluding with "Rocky Top," one of the state's many official songs and the theme song for the University of Tennessee, rather than one of his regular tunes.

And then, it was back to "Our Country."

By Web Politics Editor  |  February 2, 2008; 1:32 PM ET
 
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Comments

I appreciae the exposes of Mccain especailly his record as a Senator and Charles Keating scandal. However I dismiss the allegations and qutoations from POW days the North Vietnamese as boiler plate communist propaganda so I don't beleive a word of it. I also recall the exploitations of POW MIA families in the 1980s and 1990s by those who would try to make money out of an old issue. Does anyone else remember that fake photo early 20th centruy workers passed off as MIA. If anyone left POWs unclaimed in South East Asia in 1973 it was Nixon and Kissinger and the issue in 1990s was right wing nuts. I think McCain was right then to criticize far right conspiracy theories and my concern now is that he is trying to keep us in Iraq for the next 100 years as would Romney.

Posted by: djw3505 | February 4, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

You have your facts wrong. Fred Thompson did not attend Montgomery Bell Academy. A simple wikipedia search would would have been sufficient to verify this assertion. This is another example of a journalist failing to verify facts before publishing them. Bill Frist, however, did Montgomery Bell.

Posted by: sachinvaikunth | February 4, 2008 12:10 AM | Report abuse

You have your facts wrong. Fred Thompson did not attend Montgomery Bell Academy. Bill Frist, however, did.

Posted by: sachinvaikunth | February 4, 2008 12:05 AM | Report abuse

When Johnny-bwah is on his game, NO-ONE can out-vulgar him....

Posted by: Hub2 | February 3, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

bourassa1 - Yes, it was parody and he was being funny (people laughed). You can listen to the original version here: http://www.capsteps.com/

You might as well argue that Tom Lehrer was announcing serious intent to harm pigeons (all the world is in tune on a spring afternoon when I'm poisoning pigeons in the park...)

BTW, what is it with people posting the great unpublished American novel (well, novella) on this thread? In case any of you are wondering, the rest of us are furiously hitting page down.

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 3, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Avraamjack,(the first comment) needs a gang of therapists and a gang of priests. What has gang stalking to do with any candidate?

Posted by: caesarganz | February 3, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

From the Independent newspaper, England:
Johann Hari: Don't be fooled by the myth of John McCain


Thursday, 24 January 2008


A lazy, hazy myth has arisen out of the mists of New Hampshire and South Carolina. Across the pan-Atlantic press, the grizzled 71-year-old Vietnam vet, John McCain, is being billed as the Republican liberals can live with. He is "a bipartisan progressive"", "a principled hard liberal", "a decent man" - in the words of liberal newspapers. His fragile new frontrunner status as we go into Super Tuesday is being seen as something to cautiously welcome, a kick to the rotten Republican establishment.


But the truth is that McCain is the candidate we should most fear. Not only is he to the right of Bush on a whole range of subjects, he is also the Republican candidate most likely to dispense with Hillary or Barack.

McCain is third-generation navy royalty, raised from a young age to be a senior figure in the Armed Forces, like his father and grandfather before him. He was sent to one of the most elite boarding schools in America, then to a naval academy where he ranked 894th out of 899 students in ability. He 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. He then swiftly married the heiress to a multi-million dollar fortune.

Right up to his twenties, he remained a strikingly violent man, "ready to fight at the drop of a hat", according to his biographer Robert Timberg. This rage seems to be at the core of his personality: describing his own childhood, McCain has written: "At the smallest provocation I would go off into a mad frenzy, and then suddenly crash to the floor unconscious. When I got angry I held my breath until I blacked out."

But he claims he was transformed by his experiences in Vietnam - a war he still defends as "noble" and "winnable", if only it had been fought harder. (More than three million Vietnamese died; how much harder could it be?) His plane was shot down on a bombing raid over Hanoi, and he was captured and tortured for five years. To this day, he cannot lift his arms high enough to comb his own hair.

On his release, he used his wife's fortune to run to as a Republican senator. He was a standard-issue Reaganite corporate Republican - until the Keating Five corruption scandal consumed him. In 1987, it was revealed that McCain, along with four other senators, had taken huge campaign donations from a fraudster called Charles Keating. In return they pressured government regulators not to look too hard into Keating's affairs, allowing him to commit even more fraud. McCain later admitted: "I did it for no other reason than I valued [Keating's] support."

McCain took the only course that could possibly preserve his reputation: he turned the scandal into a debate about the political system, rather than his own personal corruption. He said it showed how "we need to drive the special interests out of Washington", and became a high-profile campaigner for campaign finance reform. But privately, his behaviour hasn't changed much. For example, in 2000 he lobbied federal regulators hard on behalf of a major campaign contributor, Paxson Communications, in an act the regulators spluttered was "highly unusual". He has never won an election without outspending his opponent.

But McCain has distinguished himself most as an über-hawk on foreign policy. To give a brief smorgasbord of his views: at a recent rally, he sang "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran," to the tune of the Beach Boys' "Barbara Ann". He says North Korea should be threatened with "extinction".

McCain has mostly opposed using US power for humanitarian goals, jeering at proposals to intervene in Rwanda or Bosnia - but he is very keen to use it for great power imperialism. He learnt this philosophy from his father and his granddad Slew, who fought in the Philippine wars at the turn of the 20th century, where he was part of a mission to crush the local resistance to the US invasion. They did it by forcing the entire population from their homes at gunpoint into "protection zones", and gunning down anybody over the age of ten who was found outside them. Today, McCain dreamily describes this as "an exotic adventure" which his grandfather "generally enjoyed".

Then McCain's father, John, led the US invasion of the Dominican Republic in 1965, at a time when there was a conflict on the Caribbean island. On one side, there were forces loyal to Juan Bosch, the democratically elected left-wing President who was committed to land redistribution and helping the poor. On the other side, there were forces who had overthrown the elected government and looked nostalgically to the playboy tyranny of Rafael Trujillo. John McCain Snr intervened to ensure the supporters of the democratic government were crushed, bragging that it taught the natives "how to behave themselves". He saw this as part of a wider mission, where the US would take over Britain's role as a "world empire".

These beliefs drive McCain today. He brags he would be happy for US troops to remain in Iraq for 100 years, and declares: "I'm not at all embarrassed of my friendship with Henry Kissinger; I'm proud of it." His most thorough biographer - and recent supporter - Matt Welch concludes: "McCain's programme for fighting foreign wars would be the most openly militaristic and interventionist platform in the White House since Teddy Roosevelt... [it] is considerably more hawkish than anything George Bush has ever practised." With him as president, we could expect much more aggressive destabilisation of Venezuela and Bolivia - and more.

So why do so many nice liberals have a weak spot for McCain? Well, to his credit, he doesn't hate immigrants: he proposed a programme to legalise the 12 million undocumented workers in the US. He sincerely opposes torture, as a survivor of it himself. He has apologised for denying global warming and now advocates a cap on greenhouse gas emissions - but only if China and India can also be locked into the system. He is somewhat uncomfortable with the religious right (while supporting a ban on abortion and gay marriage). It is a sign of how far to the right the Republican Party has drifted that these are considered signs of liberalism, rather than basic humanity.

Yet these sprinklings of sanity - onto a very extreme programme - are enough for a superficial, glib press to present McCain as "bipartisan" and "centrist". Will this be enough to put white hair into the White House? At the moment, he has considerably higher positive ratings than Hillary Clinton, and beats her in some match-up polls. If we don't start warning that the Real McCain is not the Real McCoy, we might sleepwalk into four more years of Republicanism.

j.hari@independent.co.uk

Interesting? Click here to explore further

Posted by: caesarganz | February 3, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

2229 says: "the dumbasses" abuse voting privileges." Boneheads who say things like this would rather support fraudulent plagiarists like Hillary or Obama. They couldn't tell a Republican from a Democrat in any case, so their opinions are worth nothing, the ignorant miscreant pigs!

Posted by: ttj1 | February 3, 2008 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Why is no one in the media covering Senator John McCain's dubious past and why are the other candidates bringing it up? His apparently close family links to organized crime? His apparent involvement in defrauding US tax payers of hundreds of millions of dollars as a member of the Keating Five? His appalling record in the treatment of veterans and veterans' families and the families of MIAs? The following appeared 11 years ago on a small veterans' website and has been ignored since. Why?

http://www.usvetdsp.com/story22.htm

Sen. McCain Wants To Be President
Check-out his unpresidential credentials

January-February 1997 Issue
By Ted Sampley
U.S. Veteran Dispatch


Citing his 5-1/2 years as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam, columnists and journalists freehandedly describe Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona as a war hero.

Washington Post columnist George Will wrote about McCain in 1988, "He was a prisoner for 5-1/2 years. Because he was properly obstinate, he was in solitary confinement most of that time . . . Every day for two years, one of his guards ordered him to bow, and then knocked him down."

Joseph Spear, an awestruck columnist who wanted presidential candidate Bob Dole to pick McCain for vice president wrote, "McCain is a war hero . . . He was tossed into the infamous 'Hanoi Hilton' prison camp, where he was hung by his fractured arms for hours at a time." Many have written columns suggesting that McCain is presidential material and advocate his running for the nation's highest office.

McCain obviously agrees.
Reuter's News Service reported in January that the 60 year old McCain says he wants to be President of the United States.

McCain also thinks President Clinton, who dodged the draft rather than serve in Vietnam, is the perfect presidential role model. He recently told the press that Clinton "is the best politician I have ever seen."

McCain, however, does not think so highly of the POW/MIA families and activists who openly challenge the U.S. government's POW/MIA policy, many of whom walked the halls of Congress during the Vietnam War years demanding America's prisoners of war, including POW McCain, not be forgotten.

McCain, as a member of the 1992 Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs, took the lead in demanding a U.S. Justice Department investigation of the POW/MIA activists and their organizations. He accused the activists of fraud because in some of their fund-raising literature the activists claimed the U.S. government knowingly left U.S. POWs behind after the Vietnam War and that some remain alive today.

McCain openly attacked the activists telling the press, "The people who have done these things are not zealots in a good cause. They are the most craven, most cynical and most despicable human beings to ever run a scam." The Justice Department did investigate the POW/MIA activists and their organizations and found no reason to charge any POW/MIA activist.

McCain's use of the words craven, despicable and scam are mighty powerful and poisonous words from a man who admittedly traded "military information" to his communist captors in exchange for better medical treatment--or who divorced the wife that stood by him while he was a POW, after she became crippled in an accident.

Those words are hypocritical from a man whose younger and richer wife (she's an heir to Hensley & Co., the second largest Anheuser-Busch beer distributor in the United States) got caught after stealing drugs for two years from a charitable organization of which she was president.

Editor's note: The U.S. military Code of Conduct is the definitive code specifying the responsibilities of American military personnel while in combat or captivity.

Article V of the Code is very specific in ordering U.S. military personnel to avoid answering questions to the utmost of their ability and to make no oral or written statements disloyal to the United States and its allies or harmful to their cause. Any willful violation of the Code is considered collaborating with the enemy.

U.S. Navy pilot John McCain was shot down on his 23rd mission over North Vietnam, October 26, 1967. He was released March 1973 after being held captive by the North Vietnamese for 5-1/2 years.

Within days of his release, McCain wrote the following account of his captivity, which was published in U.S. News and World Report - May 14, 1973:
"I think it was on the fourth day [after being shot down] that two guards came in, instead of one. One of them pulled back the blanket to show the other guard my injury. I looked at my knee. It was about the size of a football . . . when I saw it, I said to the guard, 'O.K., get the officer' . . . an officer came in after a few minutes. It was the man that we came to know very well as 'The Bug.' He was a psychotic torturer, one of the worst fiends that we had to deal with. I said, 'O.K., I'll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital.'"

McCain now says it was only a coincidence that at the same time he was offering "military information" in exchange for special medical treatment, his captors discovered that his father was Adm. John S. McCain Jr., commander of all U.S. forces in Europe and soon-to-be commander of all U.S. forces in the Pacific, including Vietnam.

Upon learning about McCain's father, the communists, in an unprecedented move, rushed McCain to one of their military hospitals where he received treatment not available for other U.S. prisoners of war.

Read following news excerpts that chronicle McCain and his associations:

"Nhan Dan today published answers to questions by one of its correspondents made by a U.S. air pirate detained in North Vietnam. "He is Lt. John Sidney McCain . . ." Hanoi VNA International Service in French - November 9, 1967

"To a question of the correspondent, McCain answered: 'My assignment to the Oriskany, I told myself, was due to serious losses in pilots which were sustained by this aircraft carrier due to its raids over North Vietnam territory and which necessitated replacements. From 10 to 12 pilots were transferred like me from the Forrestal to the Oriskany . . . upon arrival near the target, our formation, with six bombers, would mount the attack according to the following order: I would be number three, and the chief of the formation, number one. Each pilot would have to approach the target from a different direction, the choice of which would be left to him.'" A November 9, 1967 declassified Department of Defense document

"A meeting which will leave its mark on my life: My meeting with John Sidney McCain was certainly one of those meetings which will affect me most profoundly for the rest of my life. I had asked the North Vietnamese authorities to allow me to personally interrogate an American prisoner. They authorized me to do so. When night fell, they took me--without any precautions or mystery--to a hospital near the Gia Lam Airport reserved for the military. (Passage omitted) The officer who receives me begins: I ask you not to ask any questions of political nature. If this man replies in a way unfavorable to us, they will not hesitate to speak of "brainwashing" and conclude that we threatened him. (Passage omitted) "This John Sidney McCain is not an ordinary prisoner. His father is none other than Admiral Edmond John McCain, commander in chief of U.S. Naval forces in Europe." Written by "prominent" French television reporter Francois Chalais - January 1968

"Reds Say PW Songbird Is Pilot Son of Admiral
. . . Hanoi has aired a broadcast in which the pilot son of United States Commander in the Pacific, Adm. John McCain, purportedly admits to having bombed civilian targets in North Vietnam and praises medical treatment he has received since being taken prisoner." Saigon-UPI, June 4, 1969

"The English-Language broadcast beamed at South Vietnam was one of a series using American prisoners. It was in response to a plea by Defense Secretary Melvin S. Laird, May 19, that North Vietnam treat prisoners according to the humanitarian standards set forth by the Geneva Convention." The Washington Post - June 5, 1969

"Dr. Fernando Barral, a Spanish psychiatrist residing in Cuba, returned from the Democratic Republic of Vietnam . . . he brought back some journalistic news: an interview with a North American pilot captured in the DRV after bombing Hanoi on 26 October 1967. The meeting between him and the pilot took place in an office of the Committee for Foreign Cultural Relations in Hanoi. The pilot interviewed is Lt Cmdr John Sidney McCain, son and grandson of American Navy Admirals . . . "In the course of the interview, on various occasions he showed that knowledge of the language, saying some words, dates, and so forth in Spanish, or [using it] when he thought the interpreter was seeking the corresponding French word. "Naturally, from the beginning this established a more direct communication between us, and more than one question or my response was made directly in Spanish." Havana Granma - January 24, 1970

"Let me emphasize that there were many, many fine women who supported what they knew their husbands believed in. My wife, Carol, was one of those and I am proud of her." U.S. New and World Report - May 14, 1973

Editor's note: In 1980, McCain's personal life soured. He divorced Carol, who had been seriously injured and crippled in a motor vehicle accident, and married Cindy Hensley, whose father Jim is an Arizona "beer baron."

"Republican Sen. John McCain reported a net worth of at least $830,705 but possibly as much as $1.2 million or more, excluding personal residences . . . McCain listed his wife, Cindy, as the source of most of his assets. . . the bulk of McCain's assets consisted of stock in three Glendale firms - Hensley & Co., a beer distributorship headed by his father-in-law; Western Leasing Co., which leases trucks and equipment; and Eagle Enterprises, which invests in real estate and stock." The Phoenix Gazette - May 19, 1987

"So why has Sen. McCain, R-Ariz., gone to unprecedented lengths to block reform of the Senate campaign finance system? Why does he oppose letting this important matter even come to a vote? Perhaps it's because he is a prime beneficiary of the special interest funding of congressional elections. "McCain raised over $2.5 million for his 1986 election . . . more than $760,000 of his campaign funds came from political action committee (PACs) . . . especially disturbing are the contributions to McCain's campaign coffers from PACs outside of Arizona." The Phoenix Gazette - December 8, 1987

"While Sen. John McCain's wife and father-in-law were investing with Charles H. Keating, Jr. in a shopping center, McCain was helping Keating battle federal regulators who questioned his operation of Lincoln Savings and Loan . . . [photo caption] Documents show that Sen. John McCain's wife, Cindy, and father-in-law, James W. Hensley (second from right) are the largest investors in Fountain Square Shopping Center. Their partnership is managed by subsidiaries of American Continental Corp., run by Charles H. Keating, Jr. (right). But John McCain contends there was no conflict in his helping Keating battle federal regulators." The Arizona Republic - October 8, 1989

"Sen. John McCain had more than a constituent relationship with Charles H. Keating, Jr. prior to 1987 . . . the McCains - sometimes with their daughter and baby sitter - made at least nine trips at Keating's expense from August 1984 to August 1986 aboard either Keating's American Continental Corporation's jet or chartered planes and helicopters owned by Resorts International. Three of the trips were for vacations at Keating's luxurious retreat in the Bahamas." The Arizona Republic - October 8, 1989

"McCain, in a radio talk-show appearance last week condemned disclosures of his family's ties to Keating as "irresponsible journalism." The Arizona Republic - October 17, 1989

" . . . both in telephone conversations with reporters and on a live radio talk show, the Republican senator was far from calm. He was agitated. Angry. And the way he dealt with unpleasant questions was to bully the questioners . . . 'You're a liar,' McCain snapped Sept. 29 when an Arizona Republic reporter asked him about business ties between his wife, Cindy McCain, and Keating . . . 'That's the spouse's involvement, you idiot,' McCain sneered later in the same conversation. 'You do understand English, don't you?' ". . . Not content with just bullying reporters, McCain tried belittling them: 'It's up to you to find that out, kids.' . . . McCain wasn't talking to liars. He wasn't talking to juveniles. The senator was talking to two reporters." The Arizona Republic - October 17, 1989

"Employees at Hensley & Co., a $100 million Anheuser-Busch distribution firm, also say that during McCain's first campaign for Congress, some workers were pressured into going door-to-door in neighborhoods to hand out McCain election pamphlets . . . Hensley employees say they must take the checks to work, where they are collected by supervisors. I asked one person if employees were assured that all contributions were voluntary . . . 'no way,' I was told. 'And my (spouse) and I aren't even registered (to vote). That's what makes us so mad." The Arizona Republic - November 1, 1989

"As a 100 percent, service-connected, disabled ex-prisoner of war, I sought help from John McCain when he was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and I needed help in regard to a claim for back service-connected disability compensation. I did so because I thought that as an ex-POW himself he could relate to my problem. When I could not reach him via letters to his office, I wrote to his home address. That was a very enlightening experience . . . my letter, addressed to the congressman, was opened by his wife, Cindy. She didn't like what she read, so she wrote me a nasty letter. Apparently John McCain isn't even capable of communicating on a one-to-one basis with someone who was a POW and returned from his experience in far worse physical condition than John McCain returned from his experience . . . M. "Shane" Schoenborn." The Phoenix Gazette - November 4, 1989

"Reporters also 'discovered' that the senator's wife and father-in-law invested $359,100.00 in one of Mr. Keating's projects in 1986 . . ." The Phoenix Gazette - November 13, 1989

"The liquor case is particularly intriguing as it resulted in criminal charges against Marley's subordinates, James and Eugene Hensley. If the last name sounds familiar, it's because James is papa to Cindy McCain, who is wife of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who is infamous lately as a member of the Keating Five . . . Marley also has been a shadow figure in the 1976 slaying of Republic reporter Don Bolles. Bolles wrote extensively about Marley's lucky past. And about how the Hensleys (Marley's managers) bought Ruidso Downs racing track in New Mexico. He wrote about Eugene Hensley spending five years in federal prison for a skimming scam. And about the Hensleys selling their track to a buyer linked with Emprise Corp. And about Marley's liquor ties with Emprise . . . one of Bolles' final dispatches appeared as Marley was about to become a member of the Arizona Racing Commission - the agency that regulates racetracks, including those run at the time by Emprise . . . the story dispatched Marley's appointment. Two months later, a car bomb killed Bolles." The Phoenix Gazette - January 4, 1990

"Bradley J. Funk, an antique dealer linked to the 13-year-old Don Bolles murder case through his family's former ownership of dog-racing tracks, has died of a heart attack, authorities said Jan. 2 . . . Bolles, 47, a former investigative reporter with the Arizona Republic, died June 13, 1976, about 11 days after a dynamite-based bomb blew up beneath his car . . . in his last statement before lapsing into unconsciousness, he mentioned the Mafia, John Adamson and Emprise Corp., a Buffalo, N.Y. company with a far-flung sports empire which once included ownership of the Boston Bruins hockey team and the former Cincinnati Royals basketball franchise . . . now known as Delaware North Cos., Emprise was convicted in 1972 of a federal charge of conspiring to hide Mafia interest in a Las Vegas, Nev., casino . . . Emprise and the Funk family were partners in six dog-racing tracks in the state and the Prescott Downs horse track, and Bolles had ripped their operations in print." Arizona Business Gazette - January 5, 1990

"McCain's involvement with Keating . . . when reporters called him with questions last year about previously unknown ties to Keating, an investment by wife Cindy McCain in a Keating shopping center and trips to Keating's Bahamas home, McCain went into a rage." The Arizona Republic - April 29, 1990

"Cars, homes and bank accounts of 18 people, including eight state legislators, were confiscated in a civil racketeering lawsuit that paints a portrait of lawmakers eager to sell their influence for as little as $660 and as much as $750,000 . . . Richard Scheffel, another lobbyist indicted but not targeted in the civil racketeering suit, is reputed to have been paid $20,000 to identify and approach lawmakers interested in trading votes for money . . . in a bid to establish his professional credentials with Stedino, Scheffel is reported to have boasted that '(U.S.) Sen. John McCain's father-in-law gives money to politicians through him' . . . Bauer, in his report, said Scheffel claimed that 'each January he receives $30,000 from the local Anheuser-Busch distributor, Jim Hensley,' adding that Hensley also supplied him with names of people to list as contributors." The Phoenix Gazette - February 6, 1991

". . . Bob Delgado, executive vice president for Hensley. He also pointed out that Scheffel was a lobbyist for Anheuser-Busch Inc. and not Hensley & Co . . . Hensley & Co. has a pattern, according to state campaign filings, of registering key executives as lobbyists." The Phoenix Gazette - February 9, 1991

"Hensley & Co., a Phoenix-based beer distributor, rewards its drivers and sales people with parties at Phoenix Greyhound Park . . . 'It's been an excellent motivator for us to use for incentive contests,' said Dave Daulton, assistant vice president at Hensley." The Arizona Republic - February 15, 1991

"Don't overlook that multifaceted beer distributor Jim Hensley, father-in-law to Republican Sen. John McCain of modest Keating fame. According to current AzScam records, Hensley is a financial godfather to hosts of lobbyists." The Phoenix Gazette - March 16, 1991

"McCain, meanwhile, reported assets of more than $5.4 million, much of it held jointly with his wife, Cindy. The couple reported holding at least $2 million in stock in Hensley & Co., a beer distributorship owned by Cindy McCain's father, Jim Hensley . . . John McCain, R-Ariz., also reported at least $500,000 in Anheuser-Busch debentures, with most of the rest of the assets primarily in land holdings that his wife has invested in with her family . . . last year, McCain's wealth was estimated by Roll Call at closer to $2.9 million." The Arizona Republic - May 16, 1991

"At the time, Devereux stumbled upon Bolles' notes concerning Charles C. Morgan, a Tucson escrow agent who took a bullet to the head in 1977 while wearing a bulletproof vest. According to Devereux, Morgan worked for organized crime figures . . . Devereux says, Danny Casolaro called 'out of the blue' to ask about laundering operations, a Tucson bank, the Bonanno family and Reagan administration officials . . . a few weeks after that conversation, Casolaro was found in a West Virginia motel room with his wrists slashed. The case, initially ruled a suicide . . . The Phoenix Gazette - March 28, 1992

"Miller blamed the car-bomb slaying on former greyhound owner John Harvey Adamson, who has confessed to murdering Bolles; Phoenix lawyer Neal Roberts; and the late Bradley Funk, whose family used to race greyhounds in Arizona . . . 'this is a case of two contracts, a contract to kill and a contract to cover up who ordered the killing,' he said . . . Granville contended that Dunlap plotted with Adamson to have Bolles killed in behalf of Kemper Marley Sr., a Phoenix land and liquor baron." The Arizona Republic - February 10, 1993

"An Oregon racing regulator who has been offered the top post in the Arizona Racing Department thwarted in 1990 a Portland newspaper's investigation of a possible link between an Oregon track and an alleged organized-crime figure . . . on Friday, Gov. Fife Symington offered Barham the position of director of the Arizona Racing Department. Barham also would become director of the State Gaming Agency, which regulates Indian gaming . . . the Oregonian was looking into a possible connection between Oregon Racing, Inc. and the Emprise Corp., which had been forced out of Oregon because of allegations involving organized crime . . . the Oregonian became curious about Oregon Racing after learning that one of its early investors shared an office in Kenner, La., with John G. Masoni, a longtime Emprise partner . . . the Oregonian said Florida officials consider Masoni an 'associate' of the Detroit Mafia . . . Emprise, now called Delaware North Cos., long has had an interest in Arizona racing. At one time, the company had a virtual monopoly on dog and horse racing in the state in partnership with the Funk family of Phoenix . . . in the mid- '70s, the state moved to break the monopoly in light of a 1972 felony conviction of the company. Emprise was convicted in U.S. District Court in California of conspiring with racketeers to hide an ownership interest in the Frontier Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas." The Arizona Republic - June 23, 1993

Photo caption: "Below, Charles Keating III and McCain, then a member of the U.S. House, celebrate their August birthdays at the Keating's beachside estate at Cat Cay in the Bahamas." The Phoenix Gazette - September 12, 1993

"Cindy McCain, the wife of U.S. Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona, admitted in a series of media interviews Monday that she became addicted to the painkillers Percocet and Vicodin. She said that she used the drugs from 1989 to 1992 and acknowledged that she had stolen some pills from the American Voluntary Medical Team, a charitable organization of which she is president . . . at one point, McCain, 40, was ingesting 15 to 20 pills a day . . . the normal dosage for seriously ill patients is 6 to 10 a day for a short period." The Arizona Republic - August 24, 1994

"Cindy McCain, who admitted to drug addiction this week, faces more problems, this time involving the adoption of a Bangladeshi baby two years ago.
"Sources confirmed Wednesday that a former employee of McCain's volunteer medical team has accused her of demanding that he commit perjury in adoption proceedings for her daughter, Bridget." The Phoenix Gazette - August 25, 1994

"Her husband is Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz."
"Cindy McCain was investigated recently by the Drug Enforcement Administration for stealing and using Percocet and Vicodin, both narcotic painkillers from her aid organization . . . the county attorney's report provides a window to drug dealings within Cindy McCain's nonprofit corporation . . . Gosinski also alleged that Cindy McCain abused her husband's office and diplomatic privileges by transporting illegal substances overseas. He also claimed, according to her lawyers, that Cindy McCain tried to prevent him from providing accurate information to the DEA." The Phoenix Gazette - August 25, 1994

"About 300 guests turned out Saturday night to celebrate the 90th birthday of Joseph 'Joe Bananas' Bonanno, retired boss of New York's Bonanno crime family. He retired to Tucson in 1968 . . . John McCain, R-Ariz., and Gov. Fife Symington sent their regards by telegram." The Arizona Republic - January 17, 1995

Posted by: politics12 | February 3, 2008 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Look at John McCain's jaw. Keep an eye on it. It keeps expanding on HIS left jaw ,bigger , bigger then it gets so big and it's suddenly almost normal. I suspect the doctors are draining it off every few days. The cancer was from melanoma and it has a tendency to reoccur. I do not think he will last until the election.

Posted by: majorteddy | February 2, 2008 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Real leadership and inspiration!

http://youtube.com/watch?v=BHEO_fG3mm4

Posted by: comingawakening | February 2, 2008 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Former Sen. Bill Frist graduated from MBA not Fred Thompson.

Posted by: jt | February 2, 2008 10:41 PM | Report abuse

The facts. Not a Washington Insider doing the same thing for years as a politician, Romney has a sophisticated understanding of the challenges we face in both the national and global economies. He is a highly educated and successful leader in business making money by turning around floundering companies such as Staples and helping to produce thousands of jobs, understands the importance of people, organization, research, planning, communication and direction. He was class valedictorian at BYU, MBA and LAW degree from Harvard. While Governor of mostly Democrat Massachusetts, he brought the fractured constituencies together and they became the first state with a universal health care plan that seems to work, official figures indicate that roughly 200,000 previously uninsured residents have gained health coverage, a 45 percent drop in minimum premium costs and a 34 percent reduction in the uninsured. He took no salary at all as Governor because as he said, I have enough. He lowered state taxes, most of what Romney raised was in the form of fees, not taxes, such as court filings and firearm licensing fees. But he also closed loopholes on corporate taxes. Increased funding for education, Massachusetts students ranked #l in the nation in education. Increased penalties on drunk driving. Never supported the release of criminals convicted of serious crimes. Never was first to bring up religion. He turned around MA's economy from deficit to surplus, balancing their budget in less than 4 years. How dare he do his job well and for no pay on top of it!!! When the Salt Lake City Olympics crumbled under corruption/scandal and financial disaster he went to Salt Lake, took over for a one dollar salary, saved the Olympics and made it profitable. He led a massive security mobilization at the Olympics in the wake of the 9/11 attack and, as governor, helped build up Massachusetts' homeland security efforts. He supports a strong military. He is concerned about illegal immigration and what it means to the security of the United States. He wants to retool America and bring the jobs back home. I can certainly understand liberals hating Romney, after all he's been married to the same woman. He's from a close knit family and values family first. Regarding his flip-flopping on big issues? He may have flipped but not flopped! Everyone, and that means everyone in politics makes mistakes, gets to change their mind once after gaining more knowledge, and most politicians seem to change more than once. Stand all of the candidates up next to each other in a direct comparison of what they really have done and then vote for the best person to make good change and run the country in the right direction.

Posted by: dcdinnell | February 2, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

It's entirely possible I'm wrong, but Fred Thompson graduated from Lawrence County High, not Montgomery Bell Academy. MBA is a high school. Thompson lived in Lawrenceburg during his high school years, not Nashville. Who is your fact checker?

Posted by: kelvin | February 2, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Incredible Video of Clinton and Obama talking about McCain and Romney.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=BHEO_fG3mm4

Thoughts?

Posted by: comingawakening | February 2, 2008 10:16 PM | Report abuse

And eapf20032000, the Surge is not a success. It's simply trading money for lives: more in direct military costs with the extra troops numbers, plus paying off all the Sunni insurgents to stop attacking US troops.

The Surge has merely frozen the situation in place. And what a situation: a nightmarish failed state, run by sectarian murderers, kidnappers, torturers. Overall mortality in Iraq, including child mortality, has nearly doubled; education and health have collapsed; more than half Iraq's doctors have fled; millions lack electricity and gasoline is actually rationed in a country that floats on oil.

Women now fear to leave their homes or bare their heads; a once happily-mixed population has been driven into terrfied ethnic enclaves; ten percent of the population has simply left Iraq.

This whole adventure began by falling flat on its nose when the WMD never materialised. Now the plan B justification is gone too, as the world looks on in horror at Bush's "beacon of democracy in the Middle East".
You call that success?

And now the surge is over. Troop numbers are now declining, already close to pre-Surge levels. And whaddya know? Violence is creeping back up. Kurdish trouble is looming.

The war-boosters were all crowing a month ago that December had the lowest monthly US fatalities since I forget when. Why no crowing at the end of January? Because US fatalities went up in January. So did Iraqi fatalities.

The Iraq war is a dead-end, and so is John McCain.

Posted by: bourassa1 | February 2, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Even those who do want to stay in Iraq are mislead about John McCain's intentions there. The statement that McCain would stay "until the job is done" or "until Iraq is fixed" is simply a lie. If Iraq is fixed - if the violence truly subsides in a lasting way - US troops will be told to settle into their "enduring bases" (the Pentagon's term, not mine) and stay forever.

The whole point of the Iraq war was to build permanent US military bases in Iraq. When Congress just asked Bush to promise not to, he refused.

These bases are still being built, in the most solid, lasting way, at vast cost. Some, like Balad, are the size of small cities.

As Rummy and Cheney's PNAC thinktank summed it up before the war in their official defense policy manifesto:
"The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein."

McCain is a 100% subscriber to the global strategies of the neoconservative thinkers behind the Iraq war. He doesn't intend to stay till the job (whatever that is) is done. He intends to stay forever.

That's why he goes around comparing it to Japan and Germany. That's why he talks about 100 years. Please don't tell me he's being ironic or using parody, Fairlington Blade, cos he's not.

Posted by: bourassa1 | February 2, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

A typical McCain voter:

1. Cluelessly supported the invasion of Iraq in 2003

2. Now wants out of Iraq (huge numbers of McCain supporters exit-polled in primaries said they wanted this)

3. Cluelessly supports John McCain, a man who has no intention of leaving Iraq, ever.

Posted by: bourassa1 | February 2, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

eapf20032000
Thanks. But, I'll wait for the paperback.

Posted by: joy2 | February 2, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Stop McCain. He is vile and a tyrant. He will ruin the republican party. I will vote for Hillary before I vote for McCain. On the plus side, Romney is no McCain and is just what America needs right now.
ROMNEY '08

Posted by: poliscistudent | February 2, 2008 8:17 PM | Report abuse

This year's is one of the most important elections America has faced in many decades. Our beloved country is at a crossroads, with plenty of challenges being posed by the global threat of fundamentalist Islamic Terrorism, Global Warming and its complex economical, social and political impact on our daily lives, the dwindling supplies of oil at a world level _which, paired with America's dependence of foreign sources of it, makes us especially vulnerable_, the resurgence of a strong leftist movement in Latin America that is spurred by populist leaders, who are intent on bringing back a recycled brand of Communism, do not feel a lot of love towards our nation, and undermine democratic regimes in the Western hemisphere; while increasing poverty, Human Rights violations and strife, that translate in the weakening of our regional friends and an increased influx of migrants to our borders. The looming Iranian crisis, with the extremely worrying prospect of seeing the Ayatollahs getting weapons of mass destruction in a few years _if no effective action is taken_, and the still unfolding wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, where we have no other option but success. A success that is very dependant on the permanence of our troops to sustain the gains of the 2007 surge in Iraq, while a political solution is worked out, as evidenced by the breakthrough steps taken by the Iraqi political factions in recent months.

Concerning Cuba _the closest dictatorship to us, and one where Human Rights are violated on a daily basis: the country with the highest rates of Abortions and Suicides in the hemisphere_, the caretaker administration of Raul Castro is looking forward to get the next American administration to normalize relations with it, in much the same way it has been done with Viet Nam, i.e. without any democratization or concession on their part; and they think _not unfoundedly_ they will have it easier with a Democrat administration...

Back at home, an economy entering recession has everyone on the edge, and could be made even worse by getting government to go beyond the necessary regulating role that it should assume, as a Democrat administration is almost sure to do, and by the irresponsible spending and increased taxes that would be a trademark of the latter. Government spending is already out of sync, and a Democrat president would notch it up with a like-minded Congress that would make it easier for him (or her!) to implement a tax-and-spend policy that would pose an extra burden on the middle and upper classes, which are the engine of our society; while posing a disincentive to increasing investments and capital generation, indispensable to pull us out of the crisis, as the markets correct themselves the consequences of the sub-prime mortgage market mess and the real estate speculative boom. The long decline of many sectors of the American economy, of which Detroit is the poster child, is snowballing at a growing rate, and must be stopped no matter what. Outdated Labor regulations and lack of incentives for R&D keep on denying American automakers a fighting chance to compete against their Asian and European peers. The pressure to get better fuel efficiencies is also non-existent, as states have been deprived of imposing their own standards up to this date. Meanwhile, large regions of what has been dubbed the "rust belt" are clinging to dying industries that are cutting jobs at an alarming speed (those that still have jobs to cut). Some of those industries are salvageable, with a huge effort, but some others have been lost to outsourcing forever. Fiscal incentives are necessary for the first thing to happen; while the retraining of the disposed workforce and the creation of new jobs is fundamental to complete the recovery of the affected state economies.

Towards that end, a much needed overhaul of our nation's Educational system is extremely urgent. The gigantic strides China and India are making in taking over ever increasing shares of the world's economy are putting the pressure on us. Both countries are counting not just on an immensely cheap workforce, but also on a mayor investment in Education. Enormous efforts are being made in their elementary education system. Their universities and technical schools are graduating engineers and technicians by the bunch load, while their best and brightest are trained further in the best universities of the West. In the meantime, the overall quality of elementary education keeps on deteriorating in America, particularly when compared with other civilized nations in Europe and elsewhere; and a culture of mediocrity and mere FCAT test passing has imposed itself through indolence. The "No child left behind" policy is a good start, but far more needs to be done; the states should have more leeway to raise their own educational standards, and use vouchers and other mechanisms at discretion to achieve their purposes. The lack of affordable housing _which is a mayor problem for most of the country, and so big that it normally goes under the media screen, apparently they just have given up to discuss what they think is as close as it gets to an unsolvable difficulty (so why take the effort?)_ also has an impact in the availability and stability of a capable teaching workforce.

Threats to the role of Religion in American society, as well as the crisis of values, and a pervasive culture of death, pose urgent problems that need to be dealt with.

A broken immigration system is still to be dealt with, as our borders need to be secured, for the sake of defending our nation from potentially incoming terrorists, drug traffickers, smugglers and "coyotes", who risk immigrant's lives for the buck, and would have no moral objections to support our enemies as they attempted to cross those borders. At the same time, a guest worker program is much needed to get the necessary workforce for Agriculture, Construction and other menial jobs in different industries; jobs that Americans would not do willingly, or even competently. That would allow a safe manner for honest, hard working people to come to the US safely and orderly, pay taxes regularly, support their families back home _thus becoming a much needed stabilizing force there_, and once their time is done, return to their countries to make a decent living with their savings and earnings, as most of them yearn to, anyway. Likewise, the existence of millions of illegal aliens is another problem _specially felt in states like Arizona and New Mexico_ that needs a compassionate, common sense solution that should strike a compromise between outright amnesty and deportation.

All of the challenges ahead demand the appointment of an especially qualified person for the President's job. It takes a man of experience, leadership traits, an open mind and good old conservative values, more than anything; it takes character, a sharp mind and courage. Some of the GOP nominees have quite a few good qualities to back them up, but out of the bunch, there is a special man whom I honestly think is the best suited one for the job: John Sidney McCain III.

I am supporting John McCain out of sheer conviction. I am not a part of his campaign, and have no vested interest in him being elected. I just simply think he is the right person to lead this country. He is far from being the perfect candidate, but he is the best we have.

John McCain is a true American Hero who put his life on the line, and stood by his comrades in arms in Viet Nam, one of the few real patriots one has the chance to meet nowadays; no matter what any smear campaign might come up with. With his vast military experience, he is prepared to become Commander-in-Chief of our troops in the ongoing war on terror. In Iraq, he was the first one to see the potential problems that would come up as a result of a poorly planned post-war occupation and rebuilding of the country, and he got a lot of criticism for what many saw as score settling and disloyalty towards President Bush. Last year, he was again among the first to forecast the success of the surge in Baghdad, and his support of the President's decision was then deemed unpopular as well. From November of this year on, he will be capable of seizing the opportunities that will lead us to victory as they come, encouraging the military to do their job, free from the excessive interference of our Legislative branch of government; while making the right choices to increase our nation's security. Democrats would fold our tents, embolden our enemies, throw the region into instability, and increase the risks faced on our home soil, while other less experienced, non military men from the GOP _who sometimes also happen to have a rather careless attitude towards the use of force, in contrast with figures like Ike, who was especially sensitive to the burden a war poses on any statesman's shoulders, but who would never shy from it for the sake of defending America, democracy and our values_, might simply take the wrong path in the middle of a volatile situation. To concede defeat now by pulling out, as Democrats are so tempted to do, would strengthen al Qaeda, empower Iran and other hostile powers in the Middle East, do away with the tenuous political balance that seems to have just started taking shape in Iraq, unleash a full scale civil war there that could lead to genocide, and destabilize the entire region as neighboring powers come to the aid of their favored factions. Not to mention the combined effect of all this on the world's economy...

When it comes to our economy, John Mc Cain has put together a simple, yet attractive plan to revive it. It includes reducing Corporate Tax rates from 35% to 25%, so as to create a low tax business environment (another advantage that China and India have had upon us up to this point), the same one this country has had during its periods of higher growth. These cut would also allow the creation of new jobs, while having a positive impact on wages, which would tend to go somewhat up. A first year deduction or "Expensing" of Equipment and Technology investments would boost capital expenditures and reward investments in cutting edge technologies. Extra Tax credits would be destined to encourage R&D, and an overall simplification of the Tax code and permitting processes will do much good throughout the whole economy. Taxes would be reduced for the middle class, which has been the most hardly hit, particularly the Alternative Minimum Tax, which Mc Cain has promised to repeal. He has also committed himself to make President Bush's income and investment tax cuts permanent, make it harder for Democrats to raise taxes, keep current low taxes on dividends and capital gains _to promote saving and investments_, ban Internet Taxes, ban New Cell phone taxes, reform and make permanent the R&D tax credit, etc. In order to make all of these tax cuts, and keep the existing ones responsibly, John Mc Cain has promised to eliminate wasteful spending, Pork-barreling and earmarking _and his congressional record is good ground to believe this is more than an electoral promise_, eliminating broken government programs that do not provide essential services, and trimming the fat throughout the whole federal system. (The poor response of FEMA during the aftermath of Katrina was a clear example of the state of disarray in which many government branches have found themselves. Hopefully it will not take another crisis of such a magnitude to reveal our remaining shortcomings). Mc Cain's proposed healthcare reform would also lower Medicare Health premiums for senior citizens. There are no silver bullets that are going to make the current recession go away overnight, but all of his proposals sound like just plain common sense, and we, as a nation, could make very good use of it. Those who criticize McCain's lack of "economical expertise", forget that neither Winston Churchill nor Ronald Reagan was an Economist or a CEO, and I can not think of better leaders...

Regarding the availability of our nation's healthcare system to the millions of Americans without it, and the heavy financial impact of the current policy choices for the middle class, John McCain has offered a road to reform that does not lead through Washington and a hugely expensive, bureaucratic, government-controlled system, but that rather encourages Insurance companies to offer more affordable policy options for as many Americans as possible, leveraging the innovation and cost-effectiveness of our nation's firms to put an end to existing rigid, unfriendly bureaucracies. He has promised to build a national market where insurance is more available, portable, and accessible across state lines; in which patients' rights are respected and their information under their control; and one in which people may save more in tax-exempt Health Savings Accounts. He will assist those who need help in getting private insurance.

John McCain is also committed to provide incentives for a national market - including the reimportation of pharmaceuticals - that offer greater transparency about effective patient care, options for preventative care and therapies, and prices so that competition makes it easier for families to navigate toward better care at lower cost. He has promised to demand reform to medical malpractice laws to curb abusive lawsuits that squeeze doctors, prevent innovation, and drive up the cost of health care. We need more transparency of prices and quality measures so that patients can make informed choices; removing some of the decision power from bureaucrats, and returning it to physicians and patients.

A true conservative, McCain is, and has always been, on the right side of the abortion debate. As all of us, he has clearly stated time and time again that the Roe vs. Wade decision is simply wrong. As a president, he has promised to select nominee justices to the US Supreme Court who understand that courts should not legislate from the bench. Constitutional balance would be restored by the reversal of Roe v. Wade, returning the abortion question to the individual states. The difficult issue of abortion should not be decided by judicial fiat, thus leaving the door open for the pro-life movement to effectively cancel out the strides of the liberal agenda and the culture of death in the last thirty years. President McCain could also foster a well thought out system that would educate teenagers and support young mothers in difficult times, reinforcing faith-based, community initiatives that already provide critical services to pregnant mothers in need, while also reducing the red tape to allow more adoptions to take place. He has also strongly opposed stem cell research when it involves the destruction of human life for that purpose.

John McCain understands that Family represents the inner most core of our Judeo-Christian, Western Civilization, and as such, must be protected. He has publicly stated that he considers the institution of marriage as a union between a man and a woman, exclusively. That is not only the way God has set it to be, but the only one possible for biological procreation, and the setting in which the clearly defined roles of a father and a mother play themselves out to shape the psyche and the values of our children. Healthy families are essential to shape communities. President McCain would make everything at hand to make sure that where state and local governments do act to preserve the traditional family, the Courts would not overstep their authority and thwart the Constitutional right of the people to decide this question.

At the same time, John McCain has a long and consistent record of independent thinking, of not pandering to special interests, not modifying his public discourse or his actions depending on the latest poll and of frequent straight-talking, of telling people the truth, and not what they want to hear. I have witnessed him state in Michigan how he strongly felt about securing the borders of America to preempt illegal immigration, but how he could also not tell a service man who had been risking his life in Iraq for our country, that his mother back home should be deported. That was far from a being an answer that would get him any additional support or sympathies there, but was the honorable thing to say out loud. Honesty is a rare commodity these days, and we should give it its fair share of value.

His Congressional vote track is a clean one, and he has been the driving force behind controversial pieces of legislation that were far from being the most popular, but that were the right thing to do, which speaks a lot about the man. The most prominent examples of this are the McCain-Feingold Act for Campaign Finance Reform of 2002, and the unsuccessful McCain-Kennedy Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007. The latter failed to garner the necessary votes and became victim of cloture on the Senate floor; however, it showed not only McCain's push on the right direction to solve a difficult problem, but his capacity to cross the aisle and set up a constructive bipartisan collaboration with no less than such a Democrat stalwart as Ted Kennedy. A little bit of that is very necessary to help rebuild not only confidence in government, but the future of our country. Besides, all those who are quick to denounce McCain's "soft" position on immigration, forget that that was precisely the same tough, yet compassionate approach President Bush was advocating for, when he urged time and time again the Senate for it to pass the McCain-Kennedy immigration overhaul; and I can not think of anyone saying in his right mind that Bush has a "liberal agenda".

Last, but not least, John McCain is the most presidential of the Republican candidates, the only one who can build a broader base of support throughout our society. His appeal comes not just from the facts above, from the common sense policies that he proposes: it comes from the heart. Regardless of whether one agrees or not with his views and policies, and to what extent, it is always easy to recognize a decent man in his words and actions. The strong backing he has received from a wide array of Conservative Republicans, Evangelicals, Military personnel, Independents, young people and other voter sectors in the caucuses and primaries held up to now, particularly in New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Florida, and the sympathies he may even collect from some conservative Democrats, are a clear indication of how viable he is as a winning presidential contender. Rudy Giuliani's and Arnold Schwarzenegger's endorsements join those of Lindsay Graham and many others ranging from the moderate to the conservative wings of the GOP; he is set to win voters in New York State, as well as in California, a state whose delegates are fundamental not just for the primaries, but, more importantly, for the general election. Only John McCain can spare us from "Billary", and may also defeat Barack Obama: no other GOP nominee stands a chance. Swing block voters, like many Latinos, can be swayed by him only, and would otherwise fall into the Clintons' side. Democrats know all of this, and they are crossing fingers so that John McCain does not get nominated. It would be their worst nightmare come true, at least in what refers to their campaign opponent.

Other candidates, like Mike Huckabee, have also shown a serious interest, and in many cases commitment, to many of the causes that matter most to the American people, particularly the defense of life; but only senator McCain has a more comprehensive vision of them all, has always been consistent throughout the years in their defense, and stands a better chance to be the man championing these.

John McCain does not have the deep pockets of say, Mitt Romney. If you are a Republican, you are entirely free to vote for the candidate of your choice, the one you see fit. If that happens to be John McCain already, then you most likely know most or everything of what you just read. If you have not made up your mind yet... well, I can not impose my views and opinions on anybody (Thank God), but I full-heartedly encourage you to give John McCain a closer look and vote for him

Posted by: eapf20032000 | February 2, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, the Capitol Steps. Hard to keep track of that around here. :-)

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 2, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

avraamjack - I don't need to head off to web links to recognize something silly. Puhleeze.

bourassa1 - Technically, McCain borrowed that from the Capital Steps. [It's actually pretty funny, but you do have to understand sarcasm and parody.]

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 2, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

I hope someone tells Mellencamp about this travesty -- so Mellencamp will tell McCain to stop playing his song IMMEDIATELY! I imagine Mellencamp will be angry!

McCain is no freaking populist and any "maverick" label he had was pissed away at the 2004 GOP Convention when he started his speech by conflating the Iraq War with 9/11 in his first fear-mongering sentence!

Yuk.

Posted by: rebeccajm | February 2, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

The GOP chair in McCain's district came out and called McCain a liar today. Many other GOP leaders echoed that from Arizona. McCain just has name recognition. His under the table deals, single-handed destruction of his own family, constant lies, reputation as an emotionally unstable tyrant are not pretty. I am voting for Romney to save the economy and to save the republican party. McCain will not be able to win against Hillary with all of his scandals out in the open. Romney inspires and motivates. He is an optimist and he has made the American Dream a reality for himself and many others.
Romney '08

Posted by: poliscistudent | February 2, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

No, no. This article is wrong. McCain's campaign song goes like this:

BOMB, BOMB, BOMB, BOMB BOMB IRAN.

(Sung to the tune of the Beach Boys' Barbara-Ann)

Posted by: bourassa1 | February 2, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

It's not over yet according to Rasmussen.

You can still stop the Republican pretender.

Since Florida:

Wed: Romney 29 McCain 27

Thurs: Romney 29 McCain 27

Friday: Romney 28 McCain 30

Saturday Romney 30 McCain 30

Posted by: d3grubb | February 2, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

And, now for the OTHER side of the story...

McCAIN's RECORD OF FLIP-FLOPPING:

(I had to stop researching examples because it got too long!)

The fact is that no presidential candidate in either party has flip-flopped as egregiously as McCain on such a wide range of issues. Here's just a small sample of Sen. Straight Talk's recent series of remarkable conversions to politically convenient stances:


--- IMMIGRATION AMNESTY ---
TIM RUSSERT SAID: This is what John McCain said to the Tucson Citizen, home state paper, back in 2003. "I think we can set up a program where amnesty is extended to a certain number of people who are eligible. And at the same time make sure that we have some control over people who come in and out of" the "country. Amnesty has to be an important part because there are people who have lived in this country for 20, 30 or 40 years, who have raised children here," paid "taxes here and are not citizens. That has to be a component of it."

* When he got to Congress, McCain was a rather conventional conservative Republican. After his role in the Keating Five scandal, McCain took on a reform-minded persona. By 1999, he was a self-described "maverick" and moderate, who would move the GOP to the center. By 2004, McCain was back to being a conservative again. By 2007, he had positioned himself as an establishment Republican, and when that didn't work out, McCain decided he'd become some kind of hybrid of the various McCains of the recent past.

* He said this week that he'd vote against his own immigration plan.


--- LAW OF THE SEA ---
* McCain used to champion the Law of the Sea convention, even volunteering to testify on the treaty's behalf before a Senate committee. Now, if the treaty comes to the Senate floor, he's vowed to vote against it.


--- DREAM ACT ---
* McCain was a co-sponsor of the DREAM Act, which would grant legal status to illegal immigrants' kids who graduate from high school. In 2007, to make the far-right base happy, he voted against the bill he had taken the lead on.


--- ELECTION REFORM ---
* In 2006, McCain sponsored legislation to require grassroots lobbying coalitions to reveal their financial donors. In 2007, after receiving "feedback" on the proposal, McCain told far-right activist groups that he now opposes the measure he'd backed.

* McCain used to support major campaign-finance reform measures that bore his name. In June 2007, McCain announced his opposition to a major McCain-Feingold provision.

NOTE:
These aren't just random bills that McCain voted on -- these (The previous 4, listed) are bills that he personally championed -- recently. And now, after McCain sponsored the bills, he's not even willing to vote for them anymore.
----------

--- ABORTION ---
* On abortion rights, McCain has done a 180-degree turn, from favoring only the most minor restrictions and opposing the overturning of Roe v. Wade, to supporting an almost total ban, while advocating that the Supreme Court reverse Roe immediately.

McCain in 1999 said that, "even in the long term," he would not support the repeal of Roe v. Wade because "thousands of young American women would be performing illegal and dangerous operations." But last November he said that he now favored repeal because "I don't believe the Supreme Court should be legislating in the way that they did on Roe v. Wade."


--- GAY MARRIAGE ---
* Sen. John McCain said Thursday that he supports an initiative that would change Arizona's Constitution to ban gay marriages and deny government benefits to unmarried couples.

BUT, In 2004, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said he opposed a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage: Sen. John McCain of Arizona broke forcefully with President Bush and the Senate GOP leadership Tuesday evening over the issue of same-sex marriage, taking to the Senate floor to call a constitutional amendment that would effectively ban the practice unnecessary -- and un-Republican. "The constitutional amendment we're debating today strikes me as antithetical in every way to the core philosophy of Republicans," McCain said.

BUT, ABC reported that McCain confided to Jerry Falwell that he WOULD support such an amendment:

McCain "reconfirmed" to Falwell that he would support a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman if a federal court were to strike down state constitutional bans on gay marriage.

It prompted the DNC's Karen Finney to say, "Here he goes again, more double talk and pandering to the right wing from John McCain. It looks like there are real questions about where he truly stands on this issue, in fact, it's getting hard to tell where he truly stands on a number of critical issues."


--- ECONOMY AND TAXES ---
* McCain has transformed himself from a deficit hawk who mocked supply-side economics, into someone who sounds like he's drunk deeply from the wackiest vats of supply-side Kool-Aid, to the point where he now claims raising taxes decreases revenues (a claim so wildly in conflict with the facts - for example federal tax revenues almost doubled in real terms after the Clinton tax increases - that it's either a shameless lie or a product of astounding ignorance).


--- ETHANOL ---
* In regard to ethanol subsidies, McCain has gone from treating them as the worst sort of pork, to becoming a strong supporter of a program despised by economists, but beloved of Iowa farmers and the good people at Archer Daniels Midland.


--- RELIGIOUS RIGHT ---
* Six years ago McCain sternly condemned Jerry Falwell as "an agent of intolerance." Eighteen months ago he gave the commencement address at Falwell's university, while openly embracing one of the most noxious figures of the religious right.


--- TAX CUTS ---
* McCain in 2000 assailed Bush's proposed tax cuts as a sop to the rich, and a year later, with Bush in office, he voted against those cuts, declaring that "the benefits go to the most fortunate among us, at the expense of middle-class Americans."

NOTE: His explaination AT THE TIME sounded very much like a democrat, (I opposed it because it benefits the rich instead of the middle class).


--- DIRTY MONEY ---
* McCain in 2000 was incensed when a pair of Texas businessmen, Sam and Charley Wyly, bankrolled some Bush-friendly TV ads that distorted McCain's record. McCain declared at the time that their "dirty money" did not belong in national politics. But in 2006, McCain decided that their dirty money belonged in his campaign; he took $20,000 and allowed them to chair a McCain fund-raiser. (McCain later had to give back the money, because, it turns out, his new friends are reportedly under federal investigation.)


--- CREATIONISM ---
* McCain in 2006 suggested that creationism was not a fit topic for the schoolroom: "I respect those who think the world was created in seven days. Should it be taught as a science class? Probably not." But he suggested the opposite in 2005 ("all points of view should be presented"), and next Friday he is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at a confab sponsored by the Discovery Institute, a prominent creationism advocacy group.

How DARE McCain claim Romney is a flip flopper?

Romney changed official posistions on only ONE issue: Abortion. Check is record.

Posted by: 4mythings | February 2, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse


McCain is the weakest Republican in a contest with Hillary, not because he is not a conservative (he is not), but because he is Clintonian. He is disingenuous ( a liar), overly political (an opportunist) and undisciplined (selfish, crude and profane). If you cannot recall multiple examples of all of these faults, you may be assured the Democrat's nominee will remind you many times before November.

In short, when the media is not fawning over this rather nasty old man, it is obvious he is a person who is hard to like. His foibles leave him as the one candidate that can actually make Hillary look nice.

Posted by: d3grubb | February 2, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

"We will still vote John Edwards!"

More dumbasses that abuse their voting privilege.

Sure, let the Repubs back in again. Idiots.

Posted by: 2229 | February 2, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"PLEASE GIVE ME ONE OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW YOU MY OPINION SINCE I SERVED YOU AND THIS COUNTRY FOR SO LONG."

If you've served your country that long and think that more Bush policies are needed in this country, then you're suffering from battle fatigue.

I'm sorry military hospitals weren't able to help you. Blame Bush. You need help.

Posted by: 2229 | February 2, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

avraamjack pees on himself with hysterically funny lies and made up baloney about Clinton.

By the way, did you ever beat that charge you molested your daughter, avraamjack?

The above statement is as accurate as avraamjack's about Bill Clinton.

Posted by: 2229 | February 2, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards was an exploitive, nasty young millionaire (Did I mention he was the son of a mill worker?). His claim to represent the poor and the downtrodden? Gibberish and hogwash. He made his millions picking the pockets of insurance companies in jury trials so why not pick his pocket and take his song? (Oh, by the way, did I mention he was the son of a mill worker?)

Posted by: plmillerFL | February 2, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards was the original candidate of
change, since 2003! "Change Begins Today"
is on his campaign bus. Obama started with
"Hope" but shamelessly took John Edwards
campaign slogan as his own, then started
parroting John's campaign speeches, in
December, long before Edwards suspended his campaign. Clinton started doing the same thing, in January. We, His supporters would count the days before we would hear them plagiarizing Edwards. John drove the issues and set the election topics long before they ever started talking about them. What do I think of any of these candidates? "He/She who cannot think for themselves, cannot think!" We will still vote John Edwards! It's not the music we're voting for!

Posted by: ladycateyes432000 | February 2, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Yep...leave it to Juan McCain to pick John Meelon head....another lib who thinks 9/11 was no excuse to fight...Mellon head even told Charle Rose he did not think Peral Harbor was a reason for war.

BUT...hey Juan McCain is as close as my GOP can get to voting Democrat.

Another good reason why we the voters are staying home in Nov and letting the Democrats have it....Thanks Huckabee and McCain from me and Hillary!

Posted by: DBINDER | February 2, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

McCain is morphing into a trash man. The religious-right, neocons, left-overs from Guiliani - like Norman P....So, is he A Man for All Seasons, or has a blind ambition left him a man for no season, merely a man who wants to live in the White House so badly that he's willing to shed his soul to get there.

Posted by: abcd3 | February 2, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I HAVE SERVED MY COUNTRY FOR 13 YEARS.

ALL I ASK IS THAT YOU WATCH MY VIDEO BEFORE YOU MAKE YOUR CHOICE. (THIS IS NOT A RON PAUL VIDEO) THIS VIDEO IS FOR PICKING BETWEEN MITT ROMNEY, JOHN MCCAIN AND MIKE HUCKABEE. (SORRY RP)

PLEASE GIVE ME ONE OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW YOU MY OPINION SINCE I SERVED YOU AND THIS COUNTRY FOR SO LONG.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnU3G-HCf9w

Thank you

Semper FI
Dan Campbell
Sgt., USMC

Posted by: marinepatriot | February 2, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Take a look at this.. http://www.dipdive.com

Posted by: pvan68 | February 2, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

John McCain blasting Mellenkamp at a political rally is like Cheney blasting "Give Peace a Chance" at an American Enterprise Institute meeting.

"John McCain: More War, Less Jobs"

Posted by: iacitizen | February 2, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Hillary hardly delivered S-CHIP; she only says she did. You know, she has trouble telling the honest truth. She was extremely peripheral to that legislation. She deserves credit, however, on her own universal healthcare proposal which went down heavily and perhaps took the Democratic members of Congress with it.

Posted by: rarignac | February 2, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

the press is controlled by rich people who receive billions of dollars from the republicans, while the poor and middle class sink into misery. almost nothing that comes out of the press can be believed.
we've heard big speeches before.

hillary delivered SCHIP and pushed for FMLA, which helped millions of people when they struggled in the dot com bust in california. she is easily the best candidate.

Posted by: sd71 | February 2, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

""CLINTON SLEEZE FATIGUE WILL INVIGORATE GOP, DISPIRIT DEMOCRATS AND SINK DEMOCRATIC TICKET""

""OBAMA/EDWARDS TO WIN""

It is possible that Senator Clinton is the best candidate. However, even though many may like the policies that Senator Clinton proposes, they should also consider her record, just as Senator Clinton insists.
.
The last Clinton Administration, when faced with the fact that protection rackets where assaulting, torturing and murdering people with poison and radiation, chose to avoid its responsibilities to incarcerate the criminals and to protect the citizenry.
.
Instead, they made a deal with the criminal gang stalker protection rackets to leave them alone and to consequently abandon the citizenry.
.
Do we want a President who sells out the citizenry for votes?
.
Do we want a President who sends a "crime does pay" message to society?
.
Would you vote for a President who signed nonaggression deals with the KKKlan or the Nazi party? Gangs that torture with poison and radiation are much like the KKKlan and Nazi Party.
.
We do not need a sellout President. We need a principled leader President.
.
If you are one of the few who do not know what the above refers to, do a web search for "gang stalking" to see the tip of the dirtberg. Please do it before you decide to reply to my post. Here let me make it easy for you :

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%22gang+stalking%22

Posted by: avraamjack | February 2, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

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