Cast of Characters
Duberstein Abandons McCain
By Glenn Kessler
In a surprising rebuff of an old friend, former White House chief of Staff Kenneth Duberstein said today he was abandoning his support of John McCain and instead would back Barack Obama for president.
Duberstein, who worked for President Ronald Reagan, told CNN's Fareed Zakaria that his vote was influenced by another good friend, former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell.
"Well let's put it this way -- I think Colin Powell's decision is in fact the Good Housekeeping seal of approval on Barack Obama," Duberstein said. Powell was national security advisor to Reagan when Duberstein' was the President's chief of staff.
In a separate interview on MSNBC, Duberstein was highly critical of McCain's choice of Sarah Palin as vice president, saying "it has undermined the whole question of John McCain's judgment." He noted that McCain only interviewed the Alaska governor once before he selected her for his ticket. "Even at McDonald's, you are interviewed three times before you are given a job," he said.
Campaign finance records show that Duberstein contributed $2,300 to McCain's campaign in January. He currently runs one of the biggest lobbying firms in Washington.
Duberstein was also one of the first people McCain contacted when he began considering his first run for the presidency in 2000, according to news accounts at the time. "Duberstein offered contacts (his corporate clients include Goldman Sachs and General Motors) as well as sage advice. He began to quietly expose McCain to corporate bigwigs (and potential campaign donors), hosting a breakfast for 25 business leaders with Henry Kissinger in New York," Newsweek reported.
Posted at 4:52 PM ET on Oct 31, 2008
Cast of Characters
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