Reformer Running into Problems
John McCain has a long trail of supporting reform in the electoral process, most notably his pairing up with Democrat Russ Feingold in sponsoring the Bi-Partisan Campaign Reform Act in 2002. He also was vocal in criticizing the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth on their tactics in the 2004 election and has a long paper trail of opposing big monied interests in politics. These past actions are drawing a lot of attention to his current fundraising habits. In the past week, both the New Moscow Times and the Washington Post have had front page features on McCain the reformer, cozying up to fundraisers and consultants he has criticized in the past.
Today, The Post
pointed to McCain's alliance with A. Jerrold Perenchio, who donated $9 million to Progress for America, a group McCain criticized in 2004. Now Perenchio is raising money as a co-chairman of McCain's national finance committee. There are a number of others listed in the article who had connections to the 527's that McCain has criticized and called illegal who are now leading donors for his campaign. At least 6 of McCain's leading donors were heavily involved in 527's according to the report.
Last week, The Times
pointed out that the producers of the Swift Boat ads that he called "dishonest and dishonorable" have now been hired to be part of his advertising team. It's worth noting that the firm, Stevens Reed, Curicio, & Potholm also worked for McCain in 2000.
One of the challenges McCain will face is that he will receive particular scrutiny when it comes to his relationships with fundraisers and his fundraising behavior...for good reason. As one of the poster boys for clean elections, the media always loves to point it out when politicians aren't if it practicing what they preach.
The Cooler Line
Mike Huckabee 10-9
Mitt Romney 3-1
Fred Thompson 9-1
John McCain 9-1
Rudy Giuliani 12-1
Ron Paul 12-1
Duncan Hunter 98-1
The Cooler line is an exclusive creation of Caucus Cooler and will be updated as the political environment changes.
It is an unscientific assessment of the Iowa Caucus (not the Presidential race as a whole) from an insiders view at the given time. The line IS NOW mathematically accurate but is NOT intended for gambling purposes. Information may only be reproduced with credit to the Caucus Cooler.