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McCain Joins MySpace/MTV Presidential Dialogue

UPDATE, 11:15 pm: Click here to watch the full dialogue with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) or watch it below.


Get ready for another MYSPACE/MTV presidential dialogue tonight at 7, this time with Republican Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) who seems to be hitting his stride in New Hampshire and just snared the endorsement of the Manchester Union Leader. The Fix will join fellow moderators John Norris and Gideon Yago of MTV in posing questions to McCain at Southern New Hampshire University, in Manchester, N.H. Stay tuned for the Fix's take on McCain's peformance.

By Eric Pianin  |  December 3, 2007; 6:40 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Wag the Blog: Slippage or Status Quo?


I should have given McConnell credit even ahead of Hayden at 10:29A.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 4, 2007 7:19 PM | Report abuse


The problem is that - because of people like McCain - the laws aren't enforced:

As for the "PC race-baiting nonsense", after "reform" it would only get worse. Please re-read my previous comment. "Reform" would give the far-left, racial power groups, and the MexicanGovernment tremendous political power, and they aren't going to do a 180 and support our laws.

Attrition is the only sane solution, and McCain doesn't support that.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | December 4, 2007 5:05 PM | Report abuse

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:

Posted by: avraamjack | December 4, 2007 3:30 PM | Report abuse

I reiterate. Doing -something- is not the same as doing the -best thing-.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | December 4, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

2008 Presidential Election Weekly Poll

The Only Poll That Matters.
Results Posted Every Tuesday Evening.

Posted by: votenic | December 4, 2007 2:48 PM | Report abuse

lonewacko, Most of the things you list were added on from D legislators, and I agree that the compromise bill wasn't ideal.

I didn't like the fact that every legislator had to tack their amendment onto it, just like I don't like the fact that permanently placed amusement park rides have no safety oversight at all now due to an amendment that hamstrung the CPSC in the 1980's tacked onto an agriculture bill.

The presence of 20 million illegal aliens in our country was caused by fifty years of ignoring the problem, so I disagree with your contention that no new legislation is needed. John McCain is a tough leader who tackles tough problems. He saw a problem and worked to fix it, and I applaud him for that.

As noted in The Hill "We simply did not have the collective political will to build a fence and beef up security, because of PC race-baiting nonsense. The Democrats would love to sink their claws into another minority group like they did to Afro-Americans, and I for one do not intend to allow that. This situation requires a tough leader to make tough decisions. And that leader is John McCain"

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 4, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP: What McCains supported was so horrible in its specifics it's difficult to believe. It would have been virtually impossible to do checks on millions of people, and many terrorists would have fallen through the cracks. Gang members and criminals could be allowed to become citizens. The McCain claim that they would go to the back of the line was false.

And, leaving aside the specific faults of the bill, it would have created a mad dash towards our borders by millions of people who'd come to take part in that or future amnesties. And, it would give even more political power to the far-left, racial power groups, and the MexicanGovernment. Let me suggest researching the efforts of the latter if you aren't familiar with all the steps they take to involve themselves in our internal politics. That includes having links to some of those far-left/racial power groups.

And, the idea that legislation is needed in the first place is largely false: what we need to do is enforce the current laws, something that McCain has not exactly been a supporter of.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | December 4, 2007 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Proud and Mark: The USMC has a motto that a plan violently executed with 20% of the information now, is better than a plan perfectly executed with 80% of the information too late.'

starting a nuclear WW3 with scant/inaccurate info. no other word for this than lunatic...wildly, irresponsibly, lunatic.

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

observation: Another trait, beside actual knowledge and the willingness to work with others, that McCain and Biden share is the occasional loose lip that comes with being unscripted.

bsimon - I understand your concern, but this ship left the pier a long time ago. Pharmacists were never covered by MD-patient privilege any more than CPAs were covered by lawyer-client privilege when tax lawyers refer them individuals.

As an employers' lawyer I must deal with HIPAA, your major protection against fishing expeditions into the pharmacist's file. HIPAA specifically allows disclosure to law enforcement and public health authorities for a wide variety of suspected activities. It allows disclosures to the states' workers' compensation authorities and to FDA. And that is just off the top of my head...

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 4, 2007 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Mark: "The best news of the day is the NIE on Iran. We should hope that it is true"

Well said Mark. Now if we could just get them to stop sending terrorists and IEDs into Iraq, I'd be OK with a dictator who deny's the Halocaust.

Proud and Mark: The USMC has a motto that a plan violently executed with 20% of the information now, is better than a plan perfectly executed with 80% of the information too late.

However, I don't know if that applies to national policy as much as at the small unit/tactical level.

Just because McCain tried to *DO SOMETHING* about immigration does not mean what he tried to do was the *BEST* or *RIGHT* thing.

I admire he tried to tackle the issue, at at time when it was an unpopular issue. But I still don't agree with WHAT he tried to do.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | December 4, 2007 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who watched McCain last night (or at any point during his campaign) can see that he is a man of integrity, one of the precious few in politics. He seems to be one of the few politicians I have ever come across who honestly wants to do what's right for the country, whether it gets him into trouble or not. And because he does speak his mind and do what he believes is right, he does tend to get himself into trouble, and immigration is a prime example. Even though I believe he doesn't play the game enough to get himself elected, I certainly wish the American people would take a hard look at him before voting for wolves like Giuliani and Romney. I don't always agree with the guy, but I do trust him, which is more than I can say for the rest of the field.

Posted by: bigkam17 | December 4, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Here's some real interessting reading for us political junkies. from the WSJ of all places... i'm sure some of our poster's heads will explode...

'For months, Dale Albright, a 30-year-old Tampa, Fla., bankruptcy lawyer, has watched as his clients buckle under mortgage and credit-card debts. After an expensive recent hospital stay, he's worried that a run of bad luck could leave him in financial straits, too.

"I care about bringing our troops home...and for the most part, I believe as far as domestic terrorism goes, I think we've got that pretty much under control," Mr. Albright says. "But the economy really scares me." A longtime Republican, this election he says he's voting Democrat.

With the parties just weeks away from the first presidential nominating contests, economic concerns are seizing a top spot in many voters' minds. Falling housing prices, rising gasoline prices and health-insurance worries are supplanting the war in Iraq and concern over terrorism.

"Everywhere in town halls, you'll get a question from someone saying, 'I'm worried about losing my job and my health benefits,'" says Douglas Holtz-Eakin, economic adviser to Arizona Sen. John McCain. "You have to have a health plan even in the Republican primary, and that's a new development."

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 11:36 AM | Report abuse

It IS a fishing expedition. That is how you find folks who are using multiple drug stores and doctors to get a ton of valium or percosets. The only way to catch people who are doing this is to spread a big net and see what comes up.
Also it isn't like these folks walk into the local CVS and get 10000 pills. They convince their grandmother (or maybe a desperate doctor) to go in and get three or four prescriptions from different doctors for backpain then they fill those in different locations and sell them on the street.
The kicker is that insurance companies or Medicare pays for alot of these drugs, which consequently is how some of these types of folks get busted.

Posted by: AndyR3 | December 4, 2007 11:30 AM | Report abuse

"You waive your rights at the door of the pharmacy regarding communication between pharmacist and physicians, pharmacist and Board of Pharmacy, and pharmacist and DEA."

Some of that surprises me. I can understand that pharmacies would track sales & report to the appropriate regulating agency(ies). However, it would surprise me if that reporting included information that identified specific patients. If law enforcement is pursuing a case - say an unusual spike in certian prescriptions - I could see acquiring names of doctors & patients that prescribe / are prescribed those meds - but with a search warrant. What claudia posted implies more of a fishing expedition that seems, at best, to sit in a legal gray area.

Posted by: bsimon | December 4, 2007 11:17 AM | Report abuse

"I'd be surprised if Pharmacists were not covered under whatever provision allows for doctor-patient privilege"

b, Patients rights only go so far. You waive your rights at the door of the pharmacy regarding communication between pharmacist and physicians, pharmacist and Board of Pharmacy, and pharmacist and DEA. Pharmacists are not like priests or defense attorneys...we can and will use any info we have to bust the bad guys.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 4, 2007 11:00 AM | Report abuse

thanks proud and mark for the info. re iran, mark...

Did you see this? . Dick Cheney calls every day for bombing Iran -- quite a little obsession there -- but our intelligence sources say THERE'S NOTHING TO BOMB. So apparently he just wants to bomb someplace in Iran. Any old place, doesn't much matter... just as long as it starts a war...

'However, the new NIE will make it harder for proponents of military action against Iran to argue their case.

One source, who has close links to US intelligence, said that members of Vice President Dick Cheney's staff continued to call for military strikes against Iran "on a daily basis".'

JimD, on the Guiliani thread, provided an excellent assessment of why and how it would be insane to attack Iran, from a military perspective.

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 10:58 AM | Report abuse

The MSM has said for a while that McCain's Immigration stance is problem for him, and have always disagreed. All you have to do is look at Guiliani and Romney arguing back and forth about who ran a 'sanctuary city' or whatever and you can see what not having a strong solution based idea gets you. IMO, McCain has taken the immigration issue and used it to show his leadership and independent spirit. And I think that one thing America is looking for right now is a leader who is interested in independent minded solutions.

Posted by: AndyR3 | December 4, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

"No constitutional issue is raised - the pharmacy volunteers the information."

What about unreasonable search & seizure? Isn't there a reasonable expectation of privacy with regards to one's personal medical records? Its not like buying prescriptions amounts to throwing them in the trash & leaving them on the curb. Also, I'd be surprised if Pharmacists were not covered under whatever provision allows for doctor-patient privilege.

Posted by: bsimon | December 4, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP writes
"Senator McCain is the ONLY candidate who has been working in the trenches to get something done for the country regarding the illegal immigration problem."

What the Senator from Arizona apparently failed to realize was that achieving immigration reform in 2007 would destroy the biggest wedge issue available to his party for the 2008 election. The GOP destroyed the bill not because of the so-called 'amnesty' provisions, but because they couldn't afford to pass legislation that addressed the problem prior to the next election. What else would they run on?

Posted by: bsimon | December 4, 2007 10:42 AM | Report abuse

drindl -

1] No constitutional issue is raised - the pharmacy volunteers the information.

2] No state has an exclusionary privilege rule that applies to "client-pharmacist".

3] Texas pharm ethics permit release, without warrant or client permission, of one's pharm records to

"a law enforcement agency engaged in investigation of a suspected violation of the controlled substances laws, or the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevent Control Act of 1970".

Don't know about other states.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 4, 2007 10:38 AM | Report abuse

drindl, Hunter is the rep from California who has built the double-walled fence across the border in the San Diego area. Tancredo is the Johnny One-Note...that's all he talks about. Tancredo probably won't eat a green bean unless it's been certifiably picked by a legal citizen; he's extremely inflexible and irrational on this issue.

About your other question, yes, some states have enacted tougher laws to scrutinize the writing and dispensing of the CIIs, starting I believe in West Virginia where they had a horrible Oxycontin scourge of illegal activity that was ruining communities. I was working in Virginia when similar legislation passed, and the prescriptions were being closely monitored. In VA, the prescription monitoring program collects prescription data for Schedule II-IV drugs into a central database which can then be used by limited authorized users to assist in deterring the illegitimate use of prescription drugs.

Bear in mind, DEA and Board of Pharmacy personnel have always had access to these prescription records in the past, nothing new there. The additional reporting of controlled substance Rxs to state/local police is new, but I do not consider it an ethical violation because the info is typically limited. In VA, the information collected in this program is maintained by the Department of Health Professions, and strict security and confidentiality measures are enforced. Only those persons authorized by law can be provided information from the database, and the list of authorized persons is very limited. Prescribers and dispensers may query the database to assist in determining treatment history and to rule out the possibility that a patient is "doctor shopping" or "scamming" in order to obtain controlled substances. A prescriber must obtain written consent from the patient before submitting an inquiry.

HIPPA must always be considered, and I'm sure my home state of Vermont (!) would have done so prior to enacting new legislation.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 4, 2007 10:35 AM | Report abuse

3 quickies -

well said, proud. I do think a few of the Ds could make progress on the issue, too, but McCain continues to talk sense through the noise. He is right, I think, that Americans will not trust the process unless it begins with visible success at border security.

Why would CC suggest that D voters in IA think HRC is their best bet when she trails, or at best, runs even with, other Ds head-to-head against Rs? A weighted and freighted comment, but possibly unwitting, I suspect.

The best news of the day is the NIE on Iran. We should hope that it is true, and we should acknowledge that Hayden's crew is not "shaping" their reports and that they are unafraid to change an estimate from "sky is falling" to "partly cloudy".
There had been a predisposition never to give good news, shaped by the Cold War.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 4, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

here's the link, jim: it appears to be true.

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 10:22 AM | Report abuse


If that story is true, the authorities and the pharmacies could be in deep doo-doo over the medical privacy laws.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 4, 2007 10:18 AM | Report abuse

I agree with you about this, proud--all that's being accomplished now is status quo, nothing being done at all. But what about Hunter, what has he done? I thought he was completely xenophobic and irrational, or am I confusing him with Tancredo? I honestly can't tell them apart.

I also wanted to ask yyou a question about a police program in VT. Apparently local cops are going to pharmacies and asking for private medical info on anyone who has a Schedule II prescription. Phamacists are giving them complete info about patients -- what other medications they take, phone number, address, age, medical condition, insurance company, doctor's name, etc. Is this ethical, from your standpoint? Or legal, from a constitution standpoint. This is without a warrant, without any evidence of wrongdoing, just a blanket sweep.

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Lonewacko, fyi Senator McCain is the ONLY candidate who has been working in the trenches to get something done for the country regarding the illegal immigration problem. He championed the fight to pass legislation, worked across the aisle, and faced the wrath of many wackos like yourself for trying to get progress on this very issue, even when it was the unpopular (to say the least) thing to do at the time. Turn off Limbaugh for a second and try to think about acheiving real change on this issue...hint - it WILL require some compromise from both sides.

With the lone exception of Duncan Hunter, John McCain is the only one who has actually worked to achieve results for America. Enough of your b.s., fearmongering, xenophobic rhetoric...I and the vast majority of Americans want to see results and progress on this issue, and McCain has proven that he is the one to deliver it.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 4, 2007 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Had to post this -- it so vividly displays the naked greed and dishonesty of this administration. They hid this report for a year, all the while lying about Iran and trying to start yet another war. Why would they start a war--which would kill thousands of young americans -- with a country which does not threaten us? Well, let me see -- could it be because Iran has the world's 3rd largest oil reserves, after Saudi and Iraq? Gee what a surprise.

'The New York Times, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times lead with the declassified summary of a National Intelligence Estimate that says Iran stopped work on its nuclear weapons program in 2003. The findings, which also top the Wall Street Journal's world-wide newsbox, represent the consensus view of the country's 16 intelligence agencies and sharply contradict a 2005 estimate that said Iran was aggressively pursuing nuclear weapons. The report, which is widely described as a huge surprise, also provides a sharp contrast to recent statements by President Bush, who has been saying Iran's nuclear program poses a serious threat to U.S. security. In one fell swoop, these new conclusions are likely to have a profound effect on Bush's last year in office and the presidential campaign, not to mention efforts to get the international community to impose more sanctions on Iran.'

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Hey,Lonewacko, I know Micah. Nice guy. Where did you see his response to the 'debate?

"Iowans will show how much they really want to win this year when they go to the polls...they may have to hold their nose to vote, but if they want to win, they'll vote for Hillary."

What an obnoxious, childish remark, CC. First, I don't need you to tell me how to vote, thanks. Second, you would NEVER be this disrespectful to ANY republican candidate. What a biased little R twit you are.

Posted by: drindl | December 4, 2007 8:23 AM | Report abuse

Please don't consider this an endorsement of anything at the following site, but according to this:

(((((no one got the chance to press McCain. He said "ugh" when asked about immigration, but he does have real opinions about it that may or may not differentiate him from other candidates, and he should be pressed to answer the questions. Instead, we got what Micah Sifry called an infomercial about McCain.))))

Not to sound megalomanic or anything, but if I got the chance to "cross-examine" McCain about immigration I don't think too many people would trust much of what he says after that.

It looks like this "debate" was less of a cross examination and more like something torn from the pages of Pravda.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | December 4, 2007 12:19 AM | Report abuse


A pleasant surprise to see you on MTV when I flipped my channel. nice job...McCain sounded convincing, but may need to lay off the "my friend" interjections...


Posted by: cartmanqb | December 3, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

If CC asked McCain any questions about his weakest spot, it probably went like this: "will you pledge not to support amnesty? Yes, I know you've already falsely claimed you don't support amnesty countless times and I know you'll do it again, but please give me your stock speech."

Or similar.

The only reason McCain is still in office is because the MSM refuses to do their job and ask him real questions. For instance, compare his reaction to millions of illegal aliens in the U.S. (suggesting we might have riots if we don't give them what they want) with Ike's response.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | December 3, 2007 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I got to watch the last half-hour and I could not gather anything new from McCain. He didn't look as tired as he usually appears. Overall a good "A" from the part I saw.

Posted by: lylepink | December 3, 2007 8:32 PM | Report abuse

I just saw you on Hardball, and you disappointingly showed your hand regarding Hillary. Nearly an exact quote is: "Iowans will show how much they really want to win this year when they go to the polls...they may have to hold their nose to vote, but if they want to win, they'll vote for Hillary."

How in the world is it that the only Dem who can beat the Republican is Clinton, and who are you to tell people that's the case? You are supposedly an "objective" journalist. Honestly, I like the Fix and thought you were a fair person, but you way-crossed a line tonight.

Posted by: cmss1 | December 3, 2007 7:31 PM | Report abuse

I think drindl and rufas ran off all the bloggers today CC.

I am not sure what you can do about it, but reading the same old ultra-liberal nonsense day after day from those two loons is just not that interesting.

Posted by: kingofzouk | December 3, 2007 6:49 PM | Report abuse

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