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Kerry's Moment of Unity With Swift Boat Financier Pickens

DENVER - The "unity" theme here went a little overboard at one point on the floor last night, at least as far as Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) is concerned.

On the very night that Kerry delivered his rousing partisan speech to the Democratic National Convention, skewering John McCain as a flip-flopper, he ran into his mortal enemy, billionaire oilman T. Boone Pickens, on the floor.

Talk about bad karma.

It was Pickens, of course, who helped fund the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth smear campaign against Kerry four years ago. So Kerry -- and we can safely say this -- was apoplectic.

"He was on the floor!" an incredulous Kerry told the Sleuth very late last night when we saw him at the Palm restaurant bar inside the Westin hotel, where Barack Obama and his campaign staff are staying.

Kerry, nearly fuming, told us that Pickens showed up to do an interview on the floor with talk show host Charlie Rose. The senator seemed bowled over by the audacity of Pickens showing up on the floor at his party's convention.

"He put his hand out and said, 'Boone Pickens,'" Kerry said.

And how did Kerry react? "I said, 'John Kerry,'" the senator told us, shaking his head and rolling his eyes with a "can you believe the nerve?" kind of expression.

Pickens has been a fixture in Denver this week, hobnobbing with liberals, touting his highly publicized alternative energy plan, and seeking to make a bundle off the hot new craze in the face of exorbitantly high oil prices. Even Obama has embraced Pickens.

Earlier this month, when asked how it felt to be meeting with the man "who tore down" Kerry in 2004, Obama said, "Ah, you know, he's got a lot longer track record than that."

Kerry sure doesn't feel that way. He and Pickens have continued sparring over the four-year-old Swift Boat ads attacking Kerry's Vietnam war record up until very recently. Pickens vowed to give $1 million to anyone who could prove one thing inaccurate in the ads, credited in part with destroying Kerry's presidential quest.

Even though he sure didn't look like it last night, Kerry told us, "I've moved on, I really have."

That seems to be the mantra of this convention. Just ask the Clintons.

By Mary Ann Akers  |  August 28, 2008; 12:35 PM ET
 
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Comments

Kerry should have decked him, or how did Biden's mom put it? Bloodied his nose?

Posted by: thebob.bob | August 28, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Biden might have the stones to deck somebody but Kerry doesn't. He's all hair.

Posted by: tmartin601 | August 28, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Deck him? Kerry doesn't have the guts.....although he made sure he was heard whining to anybody who would listen.
What a loser.

Posted by: Valboski | August 28, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Riiiight, Kerry is a loser for not sucker-punching a man who told lies about Kerry's war record.

Posted by: S | August 28, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

pretty easy to be tough when a computer screen is between you and reality. but i do wish Kerry would have least spit in his face. and what is Obama talking to that scum bucket for?

Posted by: Stewart Nusbaumer | August 28, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Why do you assume the Veterans who counterd Kerry's war record with their own version(they were there)were lying? The Veterans for Truth always seemed like a bunch of normal guys to me. You rarely see combat vets disputing the record of one of their own...

Posted by: owens | August 28, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Why have a barroom brawl when the Democrats can clean their clocks on the world stage?

No doubt Kerry would have liked to deck him. But that's why those guys actually help people, and we waste our time sitting at computer screens.

Kerry was an authentic war hero. Like him or not, he risked his life for his men.

Posted by: Jill | August 28, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Kerry only served in Vietnam getting shot at, he must be some kind of coward. How dare he forget about the past and look towards a better future. That tells you a lot about him.

Posted by: Jinx | August 28, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Pickens will sit in south Texas and blow north, thus powering all the stinking wind turbines he thinks we're going to give him money to build.

Maybe Rove can power a few as well.

Posted by: Abolhassan Bani Sadr | August 28, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Kerry should've decked Pickens four years ago. Too late now. Maybe Obama's team can get Pickens to finance a similar group to go after McCain...

Posted by: Steve | August 28, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

"Riiiight, Kerry is a loser for not sucker-punching a man who told lies about Kerry's war record.

Posted by: S | August 28, 2008 3:38 PM "

Hey MR./MS. S, guess what, the guy did not tell one lie about Kerry. If you can prove he did get your $1,000,000 from Pickens!

Posted by: Agent655 | August 28, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

It's all school yard drama... stupid little feuds that should have no business making news as far as I'm concerned.

Posted by: LS | August 28, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Owens.... If you really believe what you wrote, you seem a bit naive. Those vets were put up to their tricks by the other party.....

Posted by: philt | August 28, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

What kind of news is this. The oil company is in the hands of the GOP, but Pickens is concerned with maintaining profits when the dems take over. Smart buisness and smart politics. To assume a fist fight is needed is a reminder of the attitude that led us into Iraq and has caused 8 years of failed foreign policy.

Posted by: Sam | August 28, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Pickens has done more for American than all the people in that Democratic convention. At least he had the smarts to find energy for your cars, stupid people.

Posted by: George | August 28, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Kerry actually saved lives in 'nam.

McCain fought only 20 hours, dropping bombs on stone age people, before he got caught, and got his ass kicked. Then he sang like the chicken sh#t rich boy he is.

At best, McCain is a war victim, certainly not a hero.

If being locked in a cage, subjected to adverse psychological conditions, while brave men are fighting on your behalf makes one a hero, we are minting plenty of them in Gitmo.

Posted by: True war hero | August 28, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Wow, Joe Biden's hairplugs looked great last night

Posted by: Lori | August 28, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

And in what branch of the military did Boone Pickens serve in? None. Like Judas, Boone has served only himself and money and is greatly responsible for giving America its worst president ever, one who has destroyed the country's morale, moral standing in the world, and its economy; and has, in addition, embroiled the country in two unwinnable wars.Thanks a lot, Mr. Billionaire

Posted by: Frank | August 28, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Pickens was presented with evidence of inaccuracies in the Swift Boat ads, and he refused to pay up:
http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/06/25/t-boone-pickens-says-no-deal/
He said his offer had een "misunderstood." Forget the money, Pickens is a weasel for not even correcting all the lies he funded in the face of proof of Kerry's war record. This is not political -- you don't have to like Kerry. But tell the truth about him, he was a war hero. It's not a "stupid little fued" to be smeared like this. If Americans really honor their servicemen, they should not stand for it.

Posted by: Rose | August 28, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Why blame Pickens or any one else?
Kerry lost because of Kerry.I know several democrats who couldnt stand him.Democrats lost in 2004 because of him.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

TrueWarHero has stumbled onto the super-secret plans of the Bush administration!!!


It goes like this:
-- Being a POW and being tortured makes an individual highly qualified to be a National Leader.
-- The Middle East has a desperate need for Highly Qualified National Leaders.
-- So we take a bunch of people from Afghanistan and Iraq, imprison them and torture them and
-- Ka-bam! - we've solved the Middle East Problem.


Pure genius!

Posted by: philko | August 28, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

"Why blame Pickens or any one else?
Kerry lost because of Kerry.I know several democrats who couldnt stand him.Democrats lost in 2004 because of him."

Posted by: Anonymous

Then the Democrats you know are imbeciles. You sound like one, too. Don't forget those Diebold voting machines were in action, too.

Posted by: edwcorey | August 28, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

How many houses does T Boone Pickens have?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I REMEMBER MY FRIENDS,WHEN WE HAD TO GO TO THE PARADE FIELD,IT NEVER FAILS,WE ENLISTED
MEN WOULD BE PARADING AROUND SO THAT THE OFFICER COULD PAT EACH OTHER BACKSIDE
AND GIVE EACH OTHER MEDALS.KERRY SHOULD
DECK HIM.BUT I KNEW KERRY WAS NEVER A COWARD THEY JUST LIED ON HIM,MCSHAME
ALWAS HOLLERING ABOUT DEMOCRATICS WANT
TO SURRENDER,AND HE'S THE ONLY ONE THAT SURRENDERD. SOME HERO

Posted by: GEO.S. CUSTER | August 28, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Pickens is a jerk who should not have been allowed on the floor of the convention until he apologizes to John Kerry for his completely false character assassination. On the other hand, Pickens has a GREAT plan for ramping up wind energy (and making a lot of money himself, of course) which Obama and the party should work with him on.

Posted by: Chuck | August 28, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Kerry is a gutless worm - who showed no resolve to be Prez. He also apparently had no interest in actually living in that dump on Pennsylvania Avenue, or his billionairess wife didn't.

Posted by: Rose | August 28, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Thhe Swift Boaters could never had succeeded with their lies in 2004 if we Americans had a more able mainstream news media. Why weren't they questioning why this gang was hitting on a man, Kerry, who served in Vietnam while not condemning many of our leaders who dodged the draft and combat at that time? McCain still has yet to condemn many of his closest allies who have a draft dodging resume in the war in which he suffered but still speaks of "us having lost the war due to our citizens losing their will to win." Did Bush, Cheney, the Neocons and many of your present allies lack the will to win, Mr. McCain?

Posted by: Steve | August 28, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

It is imperitive for the survival of America that T Boone Pickens makes more money.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

hey how come Kerry has not collected that million yet from pickens ! hehehehehhe.

seriously the past is the past. bygones are bygones.. kerry should go over there and shake pickens hand and work with him to make america better. forget about it - be the bigger man.

Posted by: steve | August 28, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Sure alot of anger against Pickens on this site. If he was so wrong in the swift boat deal why hasn't ANYONE taken him up on his $1,000,000 to anyone that can prove any aspect of the swift boat deal wrong?

Posted by: Paul | August 28, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

First: who let Pickens into the convention? Fellow Democrats are to blame for this.

Second: as satisfying as Kerry decking the guy would be, it would be a disaster for the convention, and getting Obama elected. That is Kerry's goal, and it supersedes all other feelings he may have.

Seeing what a fantastic speech Kerry gave, I am sorry that he had to have such an unpleasant experience.

Posted by: beachmom | August 28, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Paul. They have taken up the bet. First Kerry and then his crew. Pickens has been sent mountains of evidence. He doesn't care. And he welshed on the deal. So there you go.

Posted by: beachmom | August 28, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

What John Kerry can't prove to T. Boone Pickens, the Swift Boat veterans and the rest of us is that he was issued an honorable discharge three years after completing his active-duty service, as was the practice in the 1970s. He should have a military discharge dated 1975, three years after his release.
Instead, he has a 1978 honorable discharge, enabled by a clause in Carter's amnesty bill, giving honorables to those who got dishonorables for anti-war activities, including treason.

Posted by: JayJay | August 28, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Offering 1 million to disprove Pickens lies is a real convienient offer. I would like to offer one similiar. I vow to give 1 million to anyone who can prove that bigfoot isnt real. The odds of claiming that money, even though the premise seems much more easy to prove, is equally as ridiculous as Pickens 1 million pledge. Swift boating is sickening. We all know its the lowest of roads and sadder still its not even grounded in reality. I'd like to swift boat Pickens till he's a raving loon eating tin foil out of trash cans. LAME old coot.

Posted by: feastorafamine | August 28, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse

I would dearly love to see all the Swiftboaters identified with pictures, names and breif biographys. I don't think they would survive the light shing on them. Do you?

Posted by: Eileen | August 28, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Why should we NOT believe the Swiftboaters since they were there?
#1 How do we know they were there?
#2 How about George giving them a nice pay off After all this is politics we are talking about

Posted by: Eileen | August 28, 2008 6:36 PM | Report abuse

What John Kerry can't prove to T. Boone Pickens, the Swift Boat veterans and the rest of us is that he was issued an honorable discharge three years after completing his active-duty service, as was the practice in the 1970s. He should have a military discharge dated 1975, three years after his release.
Instead, he has a 1978 honorable discharge, enabled by a clause in Carter's amnesty bill, giving honorables to those who got dishonorables for anti-war activities, including treason.

Posted by: JayJay | August 28, 2008 6:24 PM

----------------------
Ummm how about actually doing some research?

http://fl1.findlaw.com/news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/jkerry/releaseactduty.pdf
He was released upon request to run for office then given an honorable discharge for his RESERVE duties....ewwww boy. The ill-informed and the loud of mouth. What an ugly dissapointing combonation.

Posted by: feastorafamine | August 28, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

If Bush, Cheney, Rove, McCain and their Neocon friends were not so busy for the last 8 years bankrupting this nation's Treasury spending $10 BILLION DOLLARS per month in IRAQ while ignoring the very real energy crisis we might have had a little money to invest in American infrastructure, which is falling apart. Ironic that one of the men who played a principal role in keeping installed the most criminal administration in history has now gotten religion and wants to work with Democrats. But then you see that money would have gone to construction workers, engineers, contractors, school districts, small towns and all the people who usually vote Democratic. Hence, it was far better to make Haliburton, Blackwater & Dick Cheney's friends rich. Republicans keep it in their family. Pickens needs to come clean and work to elect Obama if he means business.

Posted by: Christopher London | August 28, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

If I were the DNC, I wouldn't be letting Charlie Rose broadcast from my floor next convention .... just sayin - it's the reporter's job to report the news, not directly introduce controversy.

What's the encore, parade Jane Fonda around the RNC convention? Heck of a job Rosie.

Posted by: kgb999 | August 28, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

True War Hero: I could not have said it any better. I have never seen or heard any Veteran go on at length, bragging so consistently about his war heroism as I have seen McCain do. At some point, this will backfire on the preppy frat boy brat. McCain was a victim of his own stupidity, see: http://www.politicaltruthusa.com/2008/08/john-mccain-insane.html

********************************
Kerry actually saved lives in 'nam.

McCain fought only 20 hours, dropping bombs on stone age people, before he got caught, and got his ass kicked. Then he sang like the chicken sh#t rich boy he is.

At best, McCain is a war victim, certainly not a hero.

If being locked in a cage, subjected to adverse psychological conditions, while brave men are fighting on your behalf makes one a hero, we are minting plenty of them in Gitmo.

Posted by: Christopher London | August 28, 2008 7:02 PM | Report abuse

A pox on both their houses.

John Kerry ran a poor campaign and made many mistakes that contributed to his defeat including overplaying his Vietnam record, selecting John Edwards, and the voting for the war before he voted against it comment. Yet rather than admit his own mistakes he seems to insist on blaming the Swiftboat Veterans for Truth for his defeat.

T. Boone Pickens is a charlatan with too much money on his hands who is trying to buy political influence through television ads. He presents no more of a comprehensive energy plan than Barack Obama or John McCain do. There is not much more natural gas available than petroleum and it would soon be in short supply if it were used on large scale to power vehicles. After that his plan is the same alternative fuels that Obama and McCain both advocate without much detail.

Move on folks, nothing to see here.

Posted by: danielhancock | August 29, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Any chance Mary Ann Akers could give us just one example of a smear from the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth SMEAR campaign?"

Just one!

I'm sure the Kerry staff will help you try to find one of the SBVT charges against Kerry’s claims that he didn't have to retract, revise, or drop during his campaign (Christmas in Cambodia, Meeting with the Viet Cong in Paris, etc).

Could Mary Ann Akers explain how John Kerry got a third Purple Heart for an injury described as a "minor contusion" in the medical report (something someone other than Kerry had to complete). But, the Bronze Star citation ghost written by Kerry describes his arm as "bleeding."

A contusion, by the way, is a bruise. Minor contusions don't bleed!

Americans now "know that John Kerry was not the war hero we thought he was." Douglas Brinkley, author of the fawning Kerry biography, "Tour of Duty," after being confronted by the many discrepancies and inconsistencies when Kerry’s tales of bold deeds and magnificent heroics were subjected to scrutiny by those who served with him and those qualified to examine the records (that pretty much excludes the draft-dodging and military-hating MSM).

Posted by: Jane Fonda | August 29, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Pickens/Kerry

Not bad reporting. Liked descriptions of body language.

Posted by: 3rd-Party Advocate | August 29, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Kerry and Reid gave the only worthy speeches this convention. They carried the Democrats, saved the convention from being just another media event, and stuck to the business of democracy. Reid showed us the nerve, and Kerry showed us the heart.

Posted by: Boo | August 29, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

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