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McCain Campaign Launches Pre-emptive Strike on NYT

By Matthew Mosk
CONCORD, N.C. -- Sen. John McCain's campaign reacted with fury early this morning to a New York Times profile of the senator's wife Cindy.

A campaign spokesman called the article a "vicious attack" and released a copy of a letter the campaign's lawyer sent to New York Times executive editor Bill Keller.

In the letter, sent before the article was published, McCain lawyer John Dowd described the reporting effort as an example of the "cruel hit pieces designed to injure people that only the worst rag would investigate and publish."

"I know you and your colleagues are always preaching about raising the level of civil discourse in our political campaigns," Dowd wrote. "I think taking some your own medicine is in order here."

The story describes Cindy McCain's unique path to the campaign trail, a journey that included her battle with addiction and her isolation in Washington. The article also briefly revisits the substance of the Times article from the winter that first caused friction between McCain and the newspaper.

This morning's statement suggests the campaign views this as a fresh opportunity to turn a negative story in the Times into a referendum on the newspaper, and on the national media at large. McCain rallies often include a reference to the national media having "written off" his campaign.

And, at least with the crowds at his rallies, the jabs at the press play well.

This morning, Rep. Robin Hayes (R-N.C.), got a huge response at a rally in this North Carolina town of 56,000 outside Charlotte when he said, "Good news is, people are watching the news. Bad news is, sometimes they twist what was said into something it's not."

Randy Miller, 43, a Concord banker, said the line of attack works because people in towns like his don't trust the national media anymore.

"It used to be respected," Miller said. "No more."

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 18, 2008; 12:03 PM ET
Categories:  John McCain  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Cindy McCain Releases 2007 Tax Return
Next: Obama Leads McCain in Newspaper Endorsements


Let's throw the New York Post and Wall Street Journal out the window, folks! (ohhh yeah, let's not trust the media, ALL of it, even the right-wing papers... lol) O_o

Posted by: rickyrab | October 19, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Sunday 10/19/08

National Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby Obama 48, McCain 45 Obama +3


"Joe the plumber and every other small business should be sent a list of non-taxpayers so that they can just send them a check directly. Eliminating Obama's commission for brokering the deal could be a huge savings, and the average small business could probably cover this cost by firing just 1 person. The unemployment rate doesn't really matter as long as everyone is getting paid! People don't want to work and they don't need much to survive; they really just want to watch TV all day! For $500/month from their working comrades, 100 million non-taxpaying Americans could be living the American dream!"


You've hit the nail on the head- Obama wants to run America like ANIMAL FARM!

"From each according to his ability, to each according to his need"
K Marx 1875 & B Obama 2008

Posted by: thecannula | October 19, 2008 7:47 AM | Report abuse

When articles like this are published the loser is the American people.

If the main stream media and the far left of the Democratic party were upset when George W. Bush was elected what until you see what happens when Barack Obama becomes President!

The "silent majority" who do not have the media outlets of the left backing them will sit back and say what about us?

The media has told us that Barack was "the annointed one" and they will discover that they were lied too.

The media has sold us the kool aid and we drank it

Posted by: JoeJankovic | October 19, 2008 7:04 AM | Report abuse

Then why didn't she run for president?

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 19, 2008 2:35 AM | Report abuse

Oh, come on. Does anyone truly believe anything the NY Slimes, I mean Times, says? Just the liberrals. Why do you think Newspapers are losoing their readers? They have an agenda but people are now aware of it. Why? The internet - we now have too many sources and the truth has set us free - NOT the New York Slimes.

Posted by: desertcactus | October 18, 2008 8:25 PM | Report abuse

The article actually made me feel sympathetic toward Cindy McCain. It seems as though she and her husband don't share much emotional intimacy. Miscarriages and kicking drugs alone? Living mostly apart and vacationing apart? If it made anyone look bad, it's Sen. McCain, for keeping his distance from a wife who has never adjusted to the demands of his life in politics. Maybe that's what the campaign's really objecting to.

Posted by: mamie1 | October 18, 2008 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Its just an attack on famous media. That's the entire purpose.

The NYC media are against us. The usual Rove lies.

Posted by: ottothewise | October 18, 2008 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I note some one here is complaining that the Miami paper has something negative to say about Palin. Would that be her abuse of power? Her denial of any wrongdoing after being publicly found to have broken a statute? Would that be her not-yet-in-trial civil suit against her for covering up the crime of using Yahoo to do state business? Her making her employees use Yahoo to keep the Freedom of Information act at bay and prevent the Native AMericans and Sierra Club from following up on previous cases?
The list goes on and on. She is a multi-event criminal back in Alaska and I applaud the Miami Herald for pointing out her problems with reality. Her refusal to admit that she is stirring up people to do violence makes her lower than dirt in my opinion. Up until the lies about terror contact, I thought she was just a small town hack, but I see she is actually quite capable of evil at the level of all-time monsters, while smiling.

Posted by: ottothewise | October 18, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Before you consider McCain's claims that Obama's plan is socialist, you have to remember that McCain doesnt actually understand economics.

In real life, in actual practice, the only socialism is the McCain $300 billion give away to the banks, the one where you calculate the current value of homes vs the mortgage value and then he GIVES our tax dollars to the mortgage holders in the amount of the difference. The mortgage holders get a new mortgage at the lower rate and
I, who do not hold a mortgage nor owe on one, must pay these miscreants out of my pocket in US treasury dollars and in the value of my savings, in dollars.

Nice work if you can get it. That's McCain's socialism for bankers and home owners. He doesnt even know what the word means.

Posted by: ottothewise | October 18, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Please read this article and get to know the Real John McCain. This is sad! You can tell a lot about a man’s character by the way he treats his love ones…..
This is a quote, but read the article from the link below...
"Ted Sampley, who fought with US Special Forces in Vietnam and is now a leading campaigner for veterans’ rights, said: ‘I have been following John McCain’s career for nearly 20 years. I know him personally. There is something wrong with this guy and let me tell you what it is – deceit.
‘When he came home and saw that Carol was not the beauty he left behind, he started running around on her almost right away. Everybody around him knew it.
‘Eventually he met Cindy and she was young and beautiful and very wealthy. At that point McCain just dumped Carol for something he thought was better.
‘This is a guy who makes such a big deal about his character. He has no character. He is a fake. If there was any character in that first marriage, it all belonged to Carol."

Posted by: leoruler | October 18, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Like John McCain has said: Cindy is a "trollop" and a "c**t"; John's lovely words about his nice wife (spoken to Cindy in front of witnesses). Nice guy, that McCain is-- a very loving husband.

Gerald Clough

Posted by: lostharvestmovie | October 18, 2008 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Time for a donation to:

"Bachmann comments raise at least $150k for opponent

It's unlikely that the American media will produce the "penetrating exposé" into whether members of Congress are "pro-America or anti-America" that Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) called for Friday, but there has been at least one consequence she may not have expected: Her congressional opponent, Democrat El Tinklenberg, has been showered with cash from all parts of the country — America, that is — as apparently insulted Americans respond to Bachmann's request."

"Bachmann on Friday told MSNBC's Chris Matthews that Barack Obama is not the only anti-American member of Congress. "The news media should do a penetrating exposé and take a look. I wish they would. I wish the American media would take a great look at the views of the people in Congress and find out: Are they pro-America or anti-America? I think people would love to see an exposé like that," she said."

Posted by: nowanna3 | October 18, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

I am in shock and I can say, listen and write. It is outrageous for a respected media outlet to do such s disservice to our beloved nation. I will cancel my subscription Monday.

Posted by: Hurt2008 | October 18, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

I never read the NYT, but after the rants from old man McCain's campaign, I had to see what all the fuss was about. So I read the article online.

What I found was a Cindy McCain who has conducted herself with class and dignity and leads a full life away from Washington DC. She is the real maverick in the family.

What I read of old man McCain in the article was not flattering at all. He came across as a sad, self absorbed and isolated individual who cannot relate to people. No wonder the McCain campaign sought to discredit the article before it appeared in print.

Posted by: NewEra | October 18, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I just read the piece, and I must say, I now find Cindy to be a FAR more sympathetic figure than I previously did. She has loved that man for thirty years, and he has been less than an ideal partner to her. As far as I'm concerned, the McCain campaign is annoyed because the piece paints JOHN in a horrible light. The NYT piece was not a smear on his wife.

And I'll note one other thing. I saw the piece on the NYT website earlier today, but was insuffiently interested to read it. When I learned that the campaign was so mad about the article that it had a lawyer send a nasty letter to the Times, I decided to see why there was such a ruckus. Bad move, Mac. I wasn't voting for you anyway, but now, if you win, I'll despise you even more.

Posted by: bluenote123 | October 18, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

This pattern from the NYT (endorsing McCain during the primaries, withdrawing the endorsement after not enough damage, rumors about Vicki Iseman, and now this hit piece on Cindy) colors their Obama endorsement. Don't expect her to hand out anymore Holloween candy.

Posted by: JakeD | October 18, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

The NY Times article was quite accurate and objective. Let's not forget that McCain started to date Cindy when he was still married to her first previous wife. He basically cheated on her. When he was asked if he had dated Cindy while still married, he said: "I now have a happy marriage and I am not going to comment on something that happened many years ago".

His previous wife was older. Cindy was much younger. Her wife had some health problems. He was not willing to help her. He went for the younger one. Nothing wrong about that but he certainly is not an honest man. He is just too opportunistic and quite selfish. I do not trust him.

Posted by: JoeK1 | October 18, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

The more I see and hear from McCain, the more I think of Nixon.

Posted by: jgh2 | October 18, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

The Times have it right on target with the Cindy story. McCain and the Republican party made her front page news by allowing the public to know that she is alived standing behind John with that fix smile on her face. She wanted to say something about Obama. Anything except to tell the first Mrs. McCain "I am sorry for wronging you by sleeping with your hubsand while the two of you were still married". If you can't spill water in the tall grass, then don't try and run with the big dogs. My closet is not clean from all the past cob webs so I am not going to throw my hat in the ring claiming other wise as never ever told a lie. john as our top leader will have this country in a Goldwater war within 30 days of Jan. 20, 2009. He is an outrage old man whom days has passed. Old folks are short temper people and less or no patience. I know this for a fact. Love me grand kids but glad to see them go home after 30 minutes and John is much more older then I am. He breath hard and eyes is jumping all the time and his nerves are flicking when he hear things he don't like and can't agree with. Palin is not ready for prime time in Washington (I suppose she and the family will charge the public for staying at least 300 nights in their home in Alaska) and from all the questions John has been asked in that area she is ready to be commander in Cheif if and when something happen to him; he has yet to give a flat "Yes she is ready". all of his answers have been is the area of pta, mayor of a town in alaska (and I heard she left them 20 millions dollars in debt). The second Mrs. McCain, just like joe the Plumber, McCain made you an open season for duck hunting and he alone is to blame.

Posted by: floridaihamp | October 18, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Far from being tabloid journalism, I found your profile of Cindy McCain utterly sympathetic while being honest about the history. It evoked only compassion from me....what a sad, lonely life she has lived as Mrs. McCain. That she became addicted to painkillers during the Keating 5 scandal only makes her all the more human, more understandable to us all.

And we are all so used to campaign distortions of fact (re her Rawanda trip) that we are inured to them. A mighty small sin, but one all candidates indulge themselves in -- her far less than McCain and his campaign does.

McCain's outrage at the profile is consistent, though, with his obsession with thinness, not only in regard to his wives, but boldly spoken to random women he meets (while he himself looks like he is ready to burst). All perfectly in line with a narcissistic, egomaniacal man who thinks of women as personal accoutrements and possessions. He cannot tolerate anything but the shining image he deems himself worthy of.

His problem, not Cindy's.

Posted by: ann_shannon | October 18, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

For a guy who never shuts up about how tough and how honorable he is, McCain sure whines a lot

Posted by: chrisfox8 | October 18, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

I read the article this morning and I didn't see what was so bad about it. Most of what they reported about Mrs. McCain I already knew. In the article they mention her invovement in the Keating 5 scandle, her painkiller addiction, McCain leaving his first wife for her, as well as her charitable work and the adoption of her daughter (All things that have been established). The only thing new I learned was how she might have felt isolated in Washington and this made me feel more sympathetic towards her. BTW the NYTs has also written articles about Michelle Obama.

Posted by: Maria57 | October 18, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

If the media wasn't so bias they would talk about McCain's association with convicted felon Keating. This guy paid for McCain's family vacations while McCain was a US congressman.
That's criminal. How he got off was political. McCain received both personal and political benefits from Keating: This speaks to his judgment.
Keating was no ordinary constituent to McCain.
Media Matters:
On Oct. 8, 1989, The Arizona Republic revealed that McCain's wife and her father had invested $359,100 in a Keating shopping center in April 1986, a year before McCain met with the regulators.

The paper also reported that the McCains, sometimes accompanied by their daughter and baby-sitter, had made at least nine trips at Keating's expense, sometimes aboard the American Continental jet. Three of the trips were made during vacations to Keating's opulent Bahamas retreat at Cat Cay.

McCain also did not pay Keating for some of the trips until years after they were taken, after he learned that Keating was in trouble over Lincoln. Total cost: $13,433.

When the story broke, McCain did nothing to help himself.

"You're a liar," McCain said when a Republic reporter asked him about the business relationship between his wife and Keating.

"That's the spouse's involvement, you idiot," McCain said later in the same conversation. "You do understand English, don't you?"

He also belittled reporters when they asked about his wife's ties to Keating.

"It's up to you to find that out, kids."

The paper ran the story.

Posted by: MILLER123 | October 18, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Are we shocked that this most despicably run campaign, even more so than the Rove Bush era campaigns, are complaining, once again, about the NYT? It is so harshly hypocritical of these arrogant republicans in this campaign to easily rant and rave and call Obama a terrorist lover all over the news and then wish to boycott the NYT about an honest portrayal of Cindy McCain. If the McCains are so concerned about this article, why don't they site an error in it? Instead they feed off the frenzy and use it as a campaign "tactic" to increase the anger of their constituents, hoping to somehow pull off a victory from it. It has worked in the past. But I'm afraid this fringe group of angry racists and supremacists whites and Joe Six packs don't have as much fear to stoke as they did in 04. This time the fear is on them. They are clearly displaying the worse that America has to offer. It's shocking to see the McCains a part of this. I thought John McCain was above this trash. Clearly, he is not.

Posted by: janeDC3 | October 18, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

"Good move" , McCain

should have let it go quietly. But instead about 200% more people will read this article - an article which is actually fact based and not a vicious attack.

Posted by: johnbear1 | October 18, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

For example, not that it's untypical, today's Miami Herald is filled with pro-Obama propaganda including many negative items about Alaska and Sarah Palin. No wonder locally it's called "The Fishwrapper."

Posted by: filoporquequilo | October 18, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Candidates Discuss Why Politicians Cheat

Oct. 15, 2008
(CBS) In November, Americans decide whether Barack Obama or John McCain becomes the 44th President of the United States. In the series "Presidential Questions," CBS News anchor Katie Couric asks questions that move the candidates well beyond the usual sound-bites. Some questions concern policy. Others are more personal. All will give you a better sense of who these men are - and what has shaped them. What follows is Couric's question - and the candidates' full answers.


Katie Couric: Why do you think so many prominent political figures risk so much by being unfaithful to their spouse?

Barack Obama: I have no idea, because my attitude is the more I'm in public, I mean, I don't even want to pick my nose, you know. It's, I mean, I'm assuming everybody's watching.

And it's just an interesting - I'll leave that to the psychologists. But I find that, the more I'm in the public eye, the more I want to make sure that people know that ... there's no gap between who I am and the face I'm presenting to the world. You know, you want to, you want people to know that what you say is what you mean and that's who you are.

John McCain: I don't know, Katie, and I don't understand people's personal lives. And so I can't comment on that. I think it's something that I am not really running for president to address, and I can't comment on it.

Couric: Isn't it bizarre, though, when you think about it, Senator? Elliott Spitzer, recently John Edwards, President Clinton. I think it's very befuddling to many people in this country.

McCain: Yeah, but I also am reminded of the biblical admonition about "judge not." And so I really don't make any comments about that because, frankly, I want to be a good president and try to lead an honorable life.

And I've been an imperfect servant and so I'm not judging.

(McCain should have just admitted his mistake and move on.)

Posted by: MILLER123 | October 18, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

The real reason John McCain didn't like todays's NYT profile of his wife Cindy, was that it didn't portray him in a sympathetic light. I felt more sympathy for Cindy after I read it, than I had before.

It shows that McCain just dumped his second wife here in Washington, without any attempt to ease her way. Not a smart move when you consider that that his first wife was working for the White House at the time. It shows that he left her out in Arizona to deal with pretty much everything without him, including several miscarriages, while he pursued his career. Apparently, he couldn't even be bothered to buy her birthday presents, her parents used to pick them out for him. With a husband like that, is it any wonder why she had a problem with prescription drug abuse?

No, the real reason McCain is mad at the NYT is that it shows what a Cad he really is. (Yes, I know Cad is a dated term, but it really fits in McCain's case.)

Posted by: laSerenissima2003 | October 18, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

The New York Times is, as usual, right on the mark in its article on Cindy McCain. She is a very strange women. In public, she behaves like a zombie with a vacuous look on her face that is an obvious sign of the extent to which her brain has been damaged by her prolonged drug and alcohol addiction. She has never done anything worthwhile in her life except inherit her beer baron father's very large fortune. Happily, she is not going to be first lady and America will be better as a result.

Posted by: dsrobins | October 18, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Good points, itsagreatday1.

Posted by: sketchpada | October 18, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

The only positive thing about McCain's predictable and incoherent attacks on the NYTimes is that readers, like myself, who otherwise would have ignored this article (who really cares about the source of McCain's wealth?) might actually read it. It would be helpful if McCain would actually cite the details in the article (which concern one of his major campaigners) he considers false (most of those he likely considers negative are cited from published interviews given by Mrs. McC.)

Posted by: dane1 | October 18, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

*******Cindy McCain just wants to have sex with Joe the plumber*******

Naw, it's McShame himself who was smiling, winking and batting his eyes at Joe...

Posted by: Jerryvov | October 18, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I read the article - didn't see anything wrong with it BUT... Perhaps McCain didn't like it because one is left with the distinct feeling that he's selfishly pursued what he wants with little thought about the needs of others. I found nothing derogatory about Cindy in it. I think she has a selective memory and over-represented some of her doings a little more than they were (I didn't go to Rwanda but, uh, I could see it from the border of Zaire, so that's just as good as being there). But it appears McCain has been pretty much absent from her life, except as a source of $. My guess is he doesn't like how people will perceive HIM in this article, not how people perceive her.

And that's even more insightful about him.

Why didn't he take a hand in helping her adjust to DC the first time around? Sounds like he didn't do much to undo the rep she had as a usurper. And he doesn't remember her birthday? Jaysus, he has one wife to think about... Guess he's too busy thinking of his own 72 year old arse.

Cindy is about as flawed as any of the rest of us humans. But it's interesting that she comes off as so needy and wanting to please McCain. She definitely has issues.

I walked away from teh article liking McCain even less.

Posted by: itsagreatday1 | October 18, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

pjkiger1.===actually there were at least two stories written about a week ago on mcbush's gambling. I think one was about a guy standing next to him at the craps table in Puerto Rico. McNasty got a little too much rum under his belt and got real surly with a woman who didn't like McClone's hands hanging down in the table, which is a no no.He got real surly and then started yelling"Do you know who I am?" repeatedly until the guy finally traded places with the lady and put himself next to McNasty. I guess he went after the croupier also.Swill guy, I mean swell guy.

Posted by: majorteddy | October 18, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

so next we can expect a Fox News piece on McCain and Keating, Liddy, and Hagee, right? don't hold your breath. Keating puts Rezko to shame as far as being a felon who stole millions from thousands, Liddy actually went to jail for a felony related to trying to steal a national election, while Ayers wasn't even charged with a crime, and Hagee actually preached hatred of other actual Americans of faith, while Wright only complained about the sins of the nation. And as far as associations, McCain was infinitely closer to Keating than Obama was to Rezko, taking campaign money for years, Cindy investing in his real estate ventures, and of course the Keating 5 scandal was McCain pressuring regulators to leave him alone (there is no parallel there to Obama at all, he has never tried to help Rezko escape justice). Obama has denounced Ayers, and was appointed to a board Reagan supported by Leonore Annenberg, Reagans best friend, while McCain sought out an appearance on Liddy's show to praise this felon as a hero and a patriot (mostly just for being a right wing kook). And of course, McCain knowingly sought Hagee's endorsement, somethng Obama never did.

I don't know about you, but I think the media has treated the Obamas far worse than the McCains.

If Obama were slinging the mud McCain was, do you think the reaction would be so tepid? McCain tells everyone he's going to be nice, and now he's running even dirtier ads, accusing Obama of supporting the killing of babies, and having some sinister agenda with Ayers (whom he hasn't seen in years while McCain was on Liddy's show just recently). and McCain says people say nasty things about him at Obama rallys. John, the issue isn't which supporters are saying what, it's which candidates are inciting hate and which aren't. where's the outrage at the hypocrisy? McCain praised John Lewis to pastor Rick Warren when it suited him to praise a black, Democrat, civil rights leader and look bipartisan. How absurd to play victim and demand that Obama repudiate Lewis' calling out McCain for spewing hate.

and the hit jobs from the talk shows. one attacked Obama for having flags with an O on them mixed in with the US flag and went on about how obscene that was. wonder if he will apologize now that he has been presumably informed that that's the state flag of Ohio? probably not.

and even on substance. where's the outrage over McCain saying that letting the Bush tax cuts, which McCain said were irresponsible at the time, expire as Bush intended them to do, is socialism? let's call Obama a socialist because he wants a couple bucks in tax breaks for the middle class. Limbaugh says the government should take less of our money. guess that doesn't apply to the middle class.

Posted by: JoeT1 | October 18, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I hope it works as well for him as Michele bachmann's attack. Her mouthing off on Hardball was like an advertisement for her opponent. I heard he got $40,000 in 4 hours after she spoke. Before that, nobody knew he was alive. Want to try that one again?

Posted by: majorteddy | October 18, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Forget about Cindy being a former junkie thief. This is bigger. Ross Perot, who had private investigators probe McCain's background, told a biographer in the 1990s that McCain was a gambling addict and once had to turn to Cindy to pay off his debts to casinos. How come we're not hearing more about that from the MSM?

Posted by: pjkiger1 | October 18, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Since when has McClone ever been worried about things being twisted. The Repukes do it all the time. rj2z was right---at least they didn't call her the c word and the t word like McClown did. This is just one more instance of how their feelings get SSSSOOOO hurt when something is said about them , but they think it's just dandy to put out fake food stamps and yell Terrorist, Traitor Off with his head and Kill Him. No John McClone says he's proud of the people at his rallies, all of them, they're the only true Amuricans, and that G. Gordon Liddy, he's a great guy ,too.

Posted by: majorteddy | October 18, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

The NYT biased?

Why they have never even mentioned ANY of michelle's one-finger salutes to American, such as: "For the FIRST TIME in my life I am proud of my country."

Clearly the NYT is no more biased than an ACORN.


Posted by: ImpeachNOW | October 18, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Another hatchet job by the NYT. Not as bad as the affair with the female lobbyist one though. A once-great newspaper going down the tubes. I let my subscription lapse 3 years ago. I seldom go to their web site either. When do they do the expose on his mother?

Posted by: skeptical2 | October 18, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I read the Cindy McCain article this morning before I learned that John McCain was making a fuss about it. I did not think the article to have a negative slant, and actually thought that it was somewhat sympathetic. McCain is just using the NYT article to rally the base. Most of the "base" will not bother reading the article, but will blindly believe McCain's assertion that it is negative. Just another desperate tactic from a desperate campaign.

Posted by: jycnyc | October 18, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

MCCAIN ATTACKS HIS "BASE" -- McCain used to refer to the national media as "my base" during the years that they built up his reputation as a serious politician and maverick. These attacks on the media show how far McCain has wrapped himself in the dogma of the far right.

Posted by: ZUGAY1 | October 18, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

The McCain/Palin campaign certainly gobbled up the content of the NYTimes piece on Obama's relationship with Ayers, and tried to turn that into something it wasn't. But an article about Cindy McCain is distasteful to them, so suddenly we shouoldn't trust the Times. Nothing more than campaign flip flop.

Posted by: delawarevoter | October 18, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Its a shame at a time when our country needs leadership the gop and mcCain have seen fit to put personal intrests before the american people. The necitive tactics they use only devide this country further.
mcCain has done more in the last few months to discredit the ways of the real gop. Please Mr. mcCain go away and let the country heal from the wounds you have inflicted.

asshamed to be a republican

Posted by: fjjk49 | October 18, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Michelle Obama has any skeletons in her closet that the NYTimes can report on? Or maybe since the NYTimes is in Manhattan they can research Obama's undergraduate background at Columbia.

Or how about the NYTimes reporting Acorn's criminal activity? Something to chew on.

Posted by: johndoe121 | October 18, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

The only thing lower than republican election tactics, is the place they'll take us if they get into office.

Posted by: rooster54 | October 18, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Well, the Cindy McCain piece is a piece of trash but that does not excuse McCain for his attempt to denigrate the New York Times. Before McCain does this he has to come clean on his own trash and gutter advertisements and statements. Otherwise, he is just ranting.

Posted by: pbarnett52 | October 18, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I believe John McCain has called Cindy worse things than the NYTimes. Didn't he have her vetted either? Or maybe all that money blinded him.

Posted by: rj2z | October 18, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I read it and found it somewhat sympathetic to Cindy McCain. Of course the facts about her drug use, her Princess Diana fixation and her Stepford Wife persona weren't all that appealing.

Posted by: Roofelstoon | October 18, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Here's what the problem with the NY Times is: The Times reports the facts. Sen. McCain and his supporters don't like the facts. Therefore, they don't like the Times. Simple, really.

Posted by: chuckbarb23 | October 18, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

"A campaign spokesman called the article a 'vicious attack' and released a copy of a letter the campaign's lawyer sent to New York Times executive editor Bill Keller.

In the letter, sent before the article was published, McCain lawyer John Dowd described the reporting effort as an example of the ;cruel hit pieces designed to injure people that only the worst rag would investigate and publish.' "

Hmmm. . . more noise to hide a sinking campaign.

Posted by: sketchpada | October 18, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Randy Miller, 43, a Concord banker, said the line of attack works because people in towns like his don't trust the national media anymore.

'It used to be respected," Miller said. "No more.' "

Well, McCain himself used to be respected.

No more.


Posted by: sketchpada | October 18, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

The mainstream media long ago abandoned any pretense of ethics. Ignoring the Edwards story, puffing Obama on a minute by minute basis, and allowing King Et Al to race bait are part of the plan. No wonder newspaper lose readers each day.

Posted by: wpfree | October 18, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

How cruel McCain!!! Your bloody campaign thrashed Michelle and Obama endlessly and now screaming wold? Oh.I see.. She is blonde and white and beyond your racist views of untouchability. Go tell Palin and crooks on their despicable KKK rallies. I am ashamed of you and Republican party (not all of them but most of them who are spewing hatred and insitigating some nut case KKK lover to do something bad). All reasonable people have raised concern for Obama's safety. It is you McCain that has created a hostile environment. Go listen to Bay Buchanan and other racists.. Listen to KKK rallies.. You are disgusting McCain. Shame of the Republican party. Shame shame shame.. I will never vote for any Republican candidate eventhough I vote straight Republican earlier.

Posted by: Dave42 | October 18, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who believes anything printed in the NYSlime either has a dearth of those 'leetle gray cells' or is deliberately and partisanly blind.

Posted by: segeny | October 18, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

The fact is Obama's tax plan is just a return to the PROVEN system Bill Clinton used during the prosperity of his term in office. Bill Clinton left office with huge budget surpluses.

From the San Francisco Chronicle (A Newspaper Endorsement for McCain?!)

Social Security rehab died first under Clinton
Lewinsky scandal, impeachment ended his overhaul attempt
Carolyn Lochhead, Chronicle Washington Bureau

Monday, April 11, 2005

Seven years ago, the first Baby Boomer president traveled the country to warn that his generation's impending retirement -- 76 million people, equal to the populations of California, Texas and Florida combined -- would bankrupt the generations to follow.

"It would be unconscionable if we failed to act," President Bill Clinton said at a forum in 1998, when he made fixing the nation's retirement program a top priority of his second term.

Clinton's efforts then, in light of President Bush's now, induce an extraordinary sense of déjà vu.

Clinton appointed a bipartisan commission, which delivered in 1997 three options to save the giant retirement program. They included a now-familiar list of possible benefit cuts, from changing indexing formulas to raising the retirement age.

One of the options would have allowed workers to divert 5 percentage points of their payroll taxes to personal accounts -- the first such proposal by a government commission.

Clinton started campaigning for changes, without saying what he endorsed. "I don't want to dodge any of that," he said, but "if I advocate a specific plan right now, then all the debate will be about that. The first thing we've got to do is get the American people solidly lined up behind change."

So he traveled the country in 1998, giving speeches, radio addresses, and holding town hall meetings with young workers and retirees.

He warned that it is better to "fix the roof when the sun is shining," and ran through the familiar arithmetic of the declining number of workers supporting every retiree. He urged finding ways to allow poorer workers to build wealth so they could "own a share of our nation's prosperity."

He pleaded for bipartisanship, promising that all ideas were on the table.

But he said there were really only three options: "We can raise payroll taxes again, which no one wants to do because the payroll tax is regressive ... We can cut benefits ... or we can work together to try to find some way to increase the rate of return."


Posted by: thecannula | October 18, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Once you convince everyone the media is bad, you can say or do anything you want, unchecked. Don't fall for it, people. Look back in history at who else applied that tactic.

Posted by: sarahabc | October 18, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

This morning, Rep. Robin Hayes (R-N.C.), got a huge response at a rally in this North Carolina town of 56,000 outside Charlotte when he said, "Good news is, people are watching the news. Bad news is, sometimes they twist what was said into something it's not."

Representative Hayes is correct, sometimes the media twist what is said with help from the republicans. For example, William Ayers. No one talks about the foundation being supported by former and late President Ronald Reagan, just focus on the flimsy association to Senator Obama. By John McCain, Sarah Palin and their campaign's standards, then former President Reagan "palled around with terrorist" also. The media, in its twist per Mr. Hayes, have never pursued Todd Palin's involvement in the Alaska Independence Party, a group who expressed annexing from the Union. You are right Mr. Hayes, the media pursues half truths to sale sensational news not objective, factual news.

Posted by: ajackson3 | October 18, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

It's not hard to tell when a politician feels his campaign is not going well. It's when he starts attacking the media for the way they cover him. When was the last time you saw a politician who was winning doing that?

Posted by: | October 18, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

I haven't read the NYT article about Cindy McCain, but if she wants to give speeches at rallies, i.e., become a part of her husband's campaign, then she's certainly fair game for media scrutiny. Lord knows the GOP thinks Michelle Obama is fair game.

Posted by: smc91 | October 18, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Well, what goes around comes around. It is more important to know about a prospective first lady than Bill Ayer's casual relationship with Obama. Afterall, Cindy McCain has put herself out there as a paragon of virtue.

The only lawsuit that can be brought against the NYT is if the reporting is patently false. The McCain campaign has made lying a virtue. I am waiting for Bill Ayers to file a multiple-million-dollar lawsuit for the defamation of character and slander. Bill Ayers has been an American hero at this time to sit quietly while his name is dragged through the mud. Even without going to prison, Ayers rehabilitated himself and fits in with respectful society and has done many goos things. Yes, I also believe that people should be given a second chance. Granted, he would be the first to admit his past involvement in radical activities in the 1960s and 1970s.

I have heard no words of repentence coming out of the mouths of any of McCain's campaign for the blatant lies and smears that they have been spreading. I dare say that even if they lose the campaign, they will still blame the Obama campaign. Republicans are never wrong, yet they lie and smear. We need to watch out for voter intimidation and disinformation, which is much worse than voter registration fraud.

The Republicans have stolen two campaigns lately. I do not want them to steal a third. Their fat-cat cronies have almost destroyed the country. You can talk about my greed all day long, you can bad-mouth me, but I still have my big houses and my billions. The Republican smokescreen is so thick, I am surprised that anyone other than the fat cats will vote for them.

Please read the subtext of the ACORN voter registration issue.

Learn more about McCain's friend Gordon Liddy.

Learn more about the Alaska Indenpendence Party.

Learn more about the Keating 5.

Posted by: EarlC | October 18, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

This story is an example of election politics. Election politics is a rough and tough business. Relationships are short and fast. Friends become enemies and enemies become friends. Nothing is off limits. Everything is on the table for criticism and no subject is taboo. Lies will become fact and fact will become lies. Like Harry Truman said, "If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen."

Ben Franklin said, "The heart of a fool is in his mouth." McCain and Palin has proven this point quite well. McCain is doing all the right things to make sure that Senator Obama win the election. High ranking Republicans have told him that his campaign is losing. The LA Times has not backed a Candidate since Nixon in 1972 and now they back Senator Obama. The Republican newspaper the Chicago Tribune has never backed a Democrat in their 161 year history and now they back Senator Obama.

Sarah Palin is the best thing that could have happened to the Democrats to make sure that the Democrats win the White House and both Houses of Congress. Since Palin has become a SNL living cartoon the question will be, How are you going to keep her up in Alaska now that she has got the acting bug?

Posted by: Rias10 | October 18, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

The McCain camp attack on The New York Times seems to be all about political gain and not at all about substance.

I read the story on Cindy McCain, found it to be fair reporting, and gained a newfound respect and sympathy for Mrs. McCain.

Those people out there in Sarah Palin's fantasy pro-America land need to stop listening to so much talk radio, if you ask me.

Keep up the good work, NYT. All you media bashers, do whatever.

Posted by: sweetwtrbay | October 18, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Of course, the McCains are always welcome to sue the Times if they believe they have been libeled.

Somehow, though, I doubt they will.

The truth hurts, doesn't it? And facts are stubborn things.

Posted by: pwintersmd | October 18, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

NYT report is actually sympathetic. It's more than fair in describing her as "imprecise" a generous euphemism. Trouble is they describe her various prevarications. In other words, The Times fact-checked.

Newspapers report on plane crashes not on safe landings. The Obamas got the same scrutiny, but came out smelling like roses, not beceause the media loves them, but because they're impressively moral compared to the McCains.

Posted by: jhbyer | October 18, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

gee, I just read the "vicious stab" at Cindy McCain and I don't see the slur. Everything there was old news, simply had by anyone with a browser and an internet connection.
Gee, if I were Cindy McCain I'd be able to make a phone call on my Verizon phone in my actual home. As it is, I have to step outside onto my porch and face SW in order to have any chance of making a connection in my cell phone black hole; that, so far (3 years of trying to get their attention) Verizon has no interest in fixing.

Posted by: mikie44 | October 18, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

An hit piece.

Well-written though.

Posted by: 048304 | October 18, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the incentive to get rich:

The bad news is I paid $250,000 in taxes last year. The good news is I made $750,000. Don't you think most people would take that trade-off?

Posted by: truly_blessed | October 18, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I read the article and thought it was a fair piece of reporting. While I'm not a McCain supporter, I thought the piece humanizes Mrs. McCain and reflects the difficulties of being a politician's spouse.

Posted by: mfcjrca | October 18, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Watch fox news this Sunday night a special on Obama and all his close friends; Ayers, Wright, Rezko.

And CNN is also preparing one. Nice finally media being fair and balanced.
I love the sounds of Rezko, Wright and Ayers, it's coming from a dying elephant and I can't wait to put it out of its misery.

Posted by: AverageJane | October 18, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Any news in the WaPo about William Ayers being a founder of ACORN?

What common goals and values are shared by 0bama and domestic terrorist William Ayers that results in Ayers support for 0bama?

Democrats for McCain/Palin 2008

Country first!

Posted by: NeverLeft | October 18, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

It looks to me like the pot is calling the kettle black. The Repupblicans are turning out to be the biggest jokes ever. I love it!

The story wasn't a hit piece, it's just that there is nothing there when you try to report on Cindy McCain, she used her husband and Princess Diana to define her.

Posted by: AverageJane | October 18, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

I am no McCain fan or Cindy fan for that matter but I read the article and frankly found it sad, not negative. Why the McCain campaign went ballistic on this is beyond me as it adds scrutiny to her and especially her drug addiction that is no help to them.
Trying to raise Obama's drug experimentation 30 years ago serves no purpose and was covered in the NYT in February and of course in his own books.
I was surprised to see that this is more depth and influence from her than her Stepford wife profile.
Makes no sense to me but the McCain folks talking about the tenor of the campaign publicly is so laughable as to make one wonder if the letter was a joke.
Of course this lawyer, John Dowd, was the same lawyer McCain used in the Keating 5 scandal....

Posted by: jnail1 | October 18, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Some people want to say Obama is a terrorist, but there's only one candidate in this election who has ever destroyed millions of dollars worth of American military property, and who's blown sleeping children to smithereens for political reasons; That candidate is the Maverick, John McCain!

Posted by: rooster54 | October 18, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Conspicuously absent from the McCain campaign reaction to the profile piece is any dispute of the facts presented therein. Is the inspection of a marriage as a means of evaluating a candidate's character out of bounds? It certainly did not seem that way during the Clinton administration.

Posted by: TarHeelvoter | October 18, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Neo-cons only love the NY TIMES when it plays in their favor, like Cheney citing Judy Miller on Meet the Press about Iraq's supposed WMD's. What a bunch of hypocrites. My god, I hope their reign of terror will finally be over in two weeks. They are such a horrific, awful and dangerous bunch of liars.

Posted by: firefly1 | October 18, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Cindy McCain just wants to have sex with Joe the plumber.

Posted by: playa_brotha | October 18, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I just read the NYT story. I was surprised to find myself empathizing with her a lot more than I ever had. She has shown a lot of character despite having a much more difficult life than the average heiress. She's no Paris Hilton. I now see a woman who has spent her life supporting her husband. If she gets testy with the media and Senator Obama, I can now forgive that. She is emotionally invested in this campaign to a remarkable degree. The McCain campaign has no grounds to complain about a true-to-life portrayal of Mrs. McCain. It's a lot better than making her out to be a simple Barbie doll Diana wannabe.

Posted by: mrfett | October 18, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

First of all, the Times piece is a simple biographical one, not a partisan attack. Her struggles with addiction and her isolation are stories that have been documented over the years in a variety of media forums. McCain is merely playing to the base going after the Times--odd that he fails to mention they endorsed him in the Republican primary. And his campaign,in coordination with the RNC are currently robocalling voters with a message that Obama works "closely" with domestic terrorists and is even now plotting with radicals to change how the country is run ( you know, guys like Warren Buffet, Richard Lugar, and all those radicals at the Chicago Tribune).
McCain and Palin have unleashed forces that would take us back to the witch hunts of the 1950's; a Republican congressional supporter yesterday said that liberals should be investigated for being 'un-American", while she speaks of rural America as the "real" America, as though the 80 percent of us who live in the cities are outliers. They will divide this country to grasp power, without realizing the backlash they will unleash, and the anger and upheavel they will reap. McCain was once a man with a claim to some honor; he is now a shrill voice fomenting hatred and encouraging what is worst in us, to the detriment of all. Country first is now a punchline instead of a slogan...congratulations John, you and the phony chirpy beauty queen have debased us all.

Posted by: bklyndan22 | October 18, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

"Randy Miller, 43, a Concord banker, said the line of attack works because people in towns like his don't trust the national media anymore.

"It used to be respected," Miller said. "No more."

The same could be said of McCain.

Posted by: thrh | October 18, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Yes. The people DO get it. The soon to be FORMER main media has lost its credibility. The NYT is in fact going down the tubes (where it belongs). When a innocent voter has the audacity to ask an honest question directly to Sen. Obama about his proposed tax plan, only to be harrassed later by the media for exposing an unpopular view among voters, it is not only an absolute disgrace, but a suggestion of serious consequences to come to anyone NOT in lock-step with the Obama view- should he be elected. Are you all prepared to be 'vetted' by the press when you question your Congressman. How dare Obama attack a voter! God help us all! Wake up, vote McCain!

Posted by: independent_1 | October 18, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

The last person on the planet who has a right to demand that someone else "raise the level of civil discourse in our political campaigns", is John McCain.

The sooner America writes him off, the better.

Posted by: Arjuna9 | October 18, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Watch fox news this Sunday night a special on Obama and all his close friends; Ayers, Wright, Rezko.

And CNN is also preparing one. Nice finally media being fair and balanced.

Posted by: Devon1 | October 18, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Another diversion and slam against the NYT to delight rally fans. The NYT's article is factual, so "whats the beef" other than a created opportunity to stir up base supporters. Anyone with half a working brain will see through this as being another bogus issue. Biden is right in saying everything in the bathroom will be thrown. More expressions of a desperate campaign.

Posted by: louismraskin | October 18, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Another campaign tactic is having surrogates paint Sen. Obama as anti-American.

One of them, Rep. Michele Bachman has finally crossed the line. On "Hardball," she actually suggested it would be a good idea for journalists to investigate the patriotism of Liberal members of Congress.

Watch the video and sign the petition, asking for her censure.

It's at:

Posted by: scootmandubious | October 18, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

The "embalmed one" is not worth an article to begin with. Her and Moose Airhead Palin in the WH together gives me the creeps.

Posted by: mackiejw | October 18, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I am not voting for McCain, but the NYT has crossed over the line with respect to its election coverage and has debased itself. Every day, there are stories strongly suggesting that those who support McCain must be racists. Sad to see this great paper so partisan in its coverage, what ever happened to just print the facts and let people draw their own conclusions. Just like we need an independent party in this country, looks like we need a new independent source of news.

Posted by: merganser | October 18, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Given that the Republicans have their own Cable News Network, this criticism carries absolutely no weight at all.

Posted by: gthstonesman | October 18, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

rooster54 posted "It's aginst the bylaws of Baptist denominations to engage in the sale or distribution of alcholic beverages."

As well as Palin's spiritual constipation honed in Wasilla's Baptist enclave....who now
you betcha' golly gee's for JOE SIX PACK while in Wasilla tried to have JOE SIX PACK's drinking holes thrown on her book burning pyers . . kill two birds with one pyre.

Posted by: spritey | October 18, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Fascinating .. the McCain campaign rails against the "mainstream" media .. but yet doesn't dispute the facts. That says more about the desperation of the campaign than anything else.

Posted by: maasman | October 18, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

is there a Cindy McCain bobble head doll - that's all she does behind him. It's gtting nauseating.

Posted by: jfern03 | October 18, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Poor Cindy. Poor little husband-stealing Cindy. She was pretty much being ignored until she opened her mouth and came down on Obama for a dirty campaign when the mud-slinging was started and strongly dominated by John's old Nixonian/Rovian dirty tricks group. If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen (unless its to plagiarize someone's recipe). Just go on home to your Camelback double penthouse, have a brew and chill.

Posted by: jackaz | October 18, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Well, if Mr McCain stopped having his wife appear everywhere he goes, maybe she wouldn't warrant so much scrutiny. Can this man appear anywhere without Cindy or Ms. Palin? I guess he needs someone to hold him up!

Posted by: marcpenn1 | October 18, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Civil discourse? Such as GOP fatwa pressers to the nation's rubes: vote for dem you're a terrorist appeaser, atheist haters of America who dare to remember this is a two-party republic type of civil discourse?

Civil discourse of a scowling Cindy last week claiming injured/dysfunctional vets are badly trained wimps who deserve no pity parties

Or this type of civil discourse on live airwaves yesterday:

FOX news GOP'er Conservative Malzberg insisted:

".. even though the actual Joe Wurzelbacher would do far better under Obama's tax plans, the real point is that raising taxes on the wealthy to give relief to the middle class removes any incentive for people to get rich...."

A prime sample of GOP's "base's" Freudian slips revealing intellectual constipation and civil discourse oozing with civility!

Posted by: spritey | October 18, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

This is what happens when we choose to play in the mud. Many on the left believe in the redemption of Bill Ayers. Would this not also apply to Cindy McCain. ...............

Posted by: glclark4750 | October 18, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

McCain's flaunts being a Baptist. It's aginst the bylaws of Baptist denominations to engage in the sale or distribution of alcholic beverages. I'm not saying whether or not that's a good rule. I'm just pointing out that McCain flaunts his membership for political advantage, while profiteering on a violation of his denomination's ethical standards.

Posted by: rooster54 | October 18, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

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