Find Post Investigations On:
Facebook Scribd Twitter
Friendfeed RSS Google Reader
» About This Blog | Meet the Investigative Team | Subscribe
Ongoing Investigation

Top Secret America

The Post explores the top secret world the government created in response to the attacks of Sept. 11.

Ongoing Investigation

The Hidden Life of Guns

How guns move through American society, from store counter to crime scene.

Have a Tip?

Talk to Us

If you have solid tips, news or documents on potential ethical violations or abuses of power, we want to know. Send us your suggestions.
• E-mail Us


Post Investigations
In-depth investigative news
and multimedia from The Washington Post.
• Special Reports
• The Blog

Reporters' Notebook
An insider's guide to investigative news: reporters offer insights on their stories.

The Daily Read
A daily look at investigative news of note across the Web.

Top Picks
A weekly review of the best
in-depth and investigative reports from across the nation.

Hot Documents
Court filings, letters, audits and other documents of interest.

D.C. Region
Post coverage of investigative news in Maryland, Virginia and the District.

Washington Watchdogs
A periodic look into official government investigations.

Help! What Is RSS?
Find out how to follow Post Investigations in your favorite RSS reader.

Hot Comments

Unfortunately I believe that we are limited in what we can focus on. I think that if we proceed with the partisan sideshow of prosecuting Bush admin. officials, healthcare will get lost in the brouhaha.
— Posted by denamom, Obama's Quandary...

Recent Posts
Bob Woodward

The Washington Post's permanent investigative unit was set up in 1982 under Bob Woodward.

See what you missed, find what you're looking for.
Blog Archive »
Investigations Archive »

Have a Tip?
Send us information on ethics violations or abuses of power.
E-Mail Us »

Notable investigative projects from other news outlets.
On the Web »
Top Picks »

After McCain Plug, D.C. Group Returns Favor

POSTED: 07:39 AM ET, 10/14/2008 by Derek Kravitz

In the first two presidential debates, Sen. John McCain made a point of praising a Washington nonprofit group that releases an annual list of perceived wasteful government earmark spending -- Citizens Against Government Waste. He even suggested that viewers "go up on the Web site of Citizens Against Government Waste, and they'll look at those projects." In Nashville, last week, McCain again told voters to stop by the nonprofit's Web site, calling it a watchdog organization that watches the candidates "all the time." (CNN transcripts of the first and second presidential debates.)

McCain did not mention his longtime ties to the group, which were reported in The Post earlier this year.

After McCain's plug during the debate, Citizens Against Government Waste said its online traffic increased by 1,000 percent, National Public Radio reports. Soon after, the group's political action committee began calling McCain a "taxpayer hero" in TV ads airing over the next two weeks in four critical battleground states -- Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida.

"In 25 years, McCain never requested a single pork-barrel spending project. Not a dime in special-interest earmarks," the advertisement says. "Barack Obama? $740 million in special-interest earmarks in just three years. There's nothing Washington's tax-and-spend politicians fear more than John McCain in the White House."

The Post's Robert O'Harrow wrote in May about the relationship between McCain and the nonprofit. After McCain supported the Air Force's decision last year to award a $40 billion tanker deal to Northrop Grumman and its European partner, the group's PAC partnered with the defense contractors and one of its consultants to "produce a vitriolic advertising campaign defending the tanker deal," O'Harrow reported.

Formed in 1984, the group has long promoted McCain's image as a taxpayer advocate. Since 2006, the nonprofit's board of directors has included Orson Swindle, who also works on veterans issues as a volunteer for the McCain campaign. The group's lobbying arm, the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, has twice supported McCain for president. Its PAC has donated $11,000 in cash to McCain or a PAC under his control since 2004 -- 20 times as much cash as it has given any other candidate, records show.

O'Harrow on McCain's connections to Citizens Against Government Waste

By Derek Kravitz |  October 14, 2008; 7:39 AM ET Post Investigations
Previous: The AIG Executive Under the Spotlight | Next: Federal Bailout, Mahoney Scandal, ACORN


Please email us to report offensive comments.

Ever wonder what would happen if MTV hosted a presidential debate, well now you get to find out.

Seems McCain may be asking Palin to take his place in the debate tonight.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 14, 2008 12:58 PM

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.

characters remaining


© 2010 The Washington Post Company