McCain's Self-Righteous Self-Defense Called Further into Doubt
by Jonathan Singer, Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 05:36:08 PM EST
So much for the straight talk express. There's already evidence in the record that John McCain was out and out lying when he offered his defense against the charges leveled against him in the big New York Times exposé on his all-too-close relationship with the lobbying community, and now we have even more proof that McCain just ain't tellin' the truth.
Broadcaster Lowell "Bud" Paxson today contradicted statements from Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign that the senator did not meet with Paxson or his lobbyist before sending two controversial letters to the Federal Communications Commission on Paxson's behalf.
Paxson said he talked with McCain in his Washington office several weeks before the Arizona Republican wrote the letters to the FCC urging a rapid decision on Paxson's quest to acquire a Pittsburgh television station.
Paxson also recalled that his lobbyist, Vicki Iseman, attended the meeting in McCain's office and that Iseman helped arrange the meeting. "Was Vicki there? Probably," Paxson said in an interview with The Washington Post today. "The woman was a professional. She was good. She could get us meetings."
The recollection of the now-retired Paxson conflicted with the account provided by McCain about two letters at the center of a controversy about the senator's ties to Iseman, a partner at the lobbying firm of Alcalde & Fay.
The response from the McCain campaign, via uber-lawyer Bob Bennett: "We understood that he [McCain] did not speak directly with him [Paxson]. Now it appears he did speak to him. What is the difference?" Well, the difference is that one situation involves the truth and another does not. Either McCain was lying or he wasn't. And now we have two sources -- the person lobbying McCain and McCain himself, in the form of his own sworn deposition -- that Paxson was lobbying McCain, contrary to the latter's protestations yesterday. After having put up with nearly eight years of a Republican administration that has trouble being straight with the American people, it's hard to see someone like McCain, who has trouble telling the truth to voters about his ties with the lobbying community, doing terribly well in a general election.