Big Government Bailouts
McCain also voted for the $850 billion bailout of the big banks, which included $150 billion in pork, proposed a $300 billion bailout for mortgage lenders and, according to the Heritage Foundation, sponsored an amnesty bill in 2007 that would have cost taxpayers $2.6 trillion over the long-term.
In the fall of 2008, McCain left the campaign trail in a near panic to return to Washington where he voted in favor of a bailout despite significant Republican opposition and concerns expressed at the time.
Below is a list of seven of the top 20 (including the top five) donors to John McCain from 2003-2008 as compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. It reads like a who’s who of companies that received bailout cash. In fact, while these companies raised John McCain over $1.7 million, they were bailed out to the tune of some $135 billion.
|COMPANY||McCain Donations||Bailout Money|
|Merrill Lynch (taken over by Bank of America)||$373,595||(see Bank of America)|
|Goldman Sachs||$230, 095||$10,000,000,000|
|JPMorgan Chase & Co||$228, 107||$25,000,000,000|
|Bank of America||$166,026||$45,000,000,000|
|Bear Stearns (taken over by JPMorgan)||$117, 498||(see JPMorgan)|
John McCain called the bailout bill an “obscenity,” but voted for it anyway. It included $150 billion in earmarks. And just last week in the Arizona Republic, the senior senator from Arizona claims he was duped, seeking to blame others for his bank bailout vote. He repeated the claim on yesterday’s Meet The Press. Ironically, he continues to tout his “experience” as to why Arizonans should return him to the Senate.
“John McCain likes to talk tough about the bankers at the center of the economic meltdown, but he still kept their cash. But as we saw with Charlie Keating, when it comes to financial interests McCain appears to have a blind spot,” said Hayworth campaign manager David Payne, “During the economic meltdown in the Fall of 08, Republicans all across America looked to McCain for leadership, but instead they saw a panicky career politician cave to the special interests and ensure Barack Obama’s election.”
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Policy
In October of 2006, while participating in MSNBC’s Hardball College Tour, Senator McCain said in response to a question about “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”: “I understand the opposition to it, and I’ve had these debates and discussions, but the day that the leadership of the military comes to me and says, senator, we ought to change the policy, then I think we ought to consider seriously changing it because those leaders in the military are the ones we give the responsibility to.” (Emphasis added)
In an interview given this past June to Ana Marie Cox, McCain said this about the policy: “My opinion is shaped by the view of the leaders of the military.”
So when did Senator McCain change his mind about having his mind changed by military leaders?
Yesterday, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Admiral Robert Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, testified on Capitol Hill that they think the policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” should come to an end.
And what response did Senator McCain give to these military leaders asking for a change?
“’Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ has been an imperfect, but effective policy. And at this moment when we’re asking more of our military than at any time in recent memory we should not repeal this law.” (Emphasis added)
McCain even went so far as to accuse Secretary Gates of trying to change the policy single-handedly, saying: “I’m happy to say we still have a Congress of the United States that would have to pass a law to repeal ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’, despite your efforts to repeal it, in many respects, by fiat.”
Dissing Senior Citizens
Prior to becoming a 73-year old senior himself McCain derided the well-known retirement community.
“Most of the people coming here are not senior citizens moving to Leisure World, I mean Seizure World, I mean, uh, Sun City…I mentioned Seizure World a moment ago…the last election in 1984, 97% of them came out to vote. I think the other 3% were in intensive care.”
According to a member of the audience, McCain characterized seniors as a group “that makes demands without contributing.” (Source: Casa Grande Dispatch | Casa Grande, Arizona | Friday, June 20, 1986)
John McCain refused to listen to over 80% of his constituents and the American public by Co-Sponsoring Amnesty legislation with Senator Kennedy in 2007 that would have turned millions of illegal aliens into US voters. McCain’s Amnesty legislation failed after the Capital phone system collapsed under the pressure of angry calls ranging 50-100 to 1 against his bill.
McCain apologized to and misled Republican voters in the 2008 GOP Primary for President by claiming he had changed his position on Amnesty and after winning the primary, he flip flopped and returned to his prior pro-Amnesty positions, which left many voters feeling they could not trust John McCain.
“So yeah, of course John McCain will get our vote,” said one Ku Klux Klan member in their endorsement
video for Senator John McCain. The video can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?
“But I’m going Republican and I talked to my guys and most of them are voting for McCain too,” said Ron Edwards. Edwards is an Imperial Wizard with the Imperial Klans of America.
McCain supports federal funding for destructive embryonic stem cell research – “because Nancy Reagan supports it.” Rated 75 percent by the National Right to Life Committee, indicating a mixed record on abortion. (Dec 2006)
McCain voted against cloture on a federal marriage amendment.
Campaigning in New Hampshire in 2000, McCain said that if his teen-age daughter got pregnant, he would let her make the “choice” on whether or not to abort the child. This is the pro-abortion argument championed by Planned Parenthood and the abortion advocacy.
Big Government Regulations
Senator John McCain’s big government legislation to further regulate vitamins and supplements, hurting consumer choice and small businesses across Arizona.
The legislation sparked outrage throughout Arizona and the country.
Sen. McCain’s partnership with U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan (D-North Dakota) follows other liberal efforts with Joseph Lieberman on global warming, Ted Kennedy on amnesty and Russ Feingold on First Amendment regulations which were recently overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.
“Use of vitamins and supplements should not be regulated simply because a few athletes want to redirect attention from their doping,” said Hayworth.
This bill is yet more “bipartisan” legislation by the 24-year incumbent that panders to those interested in increasing the size and scope of the federal government. Senator McCain voted for the massive bank bailout bill in 2008, which included $150 billion in earmarks. During his presidential run he proposed spending $300 billion to buy up every bad mortgage in America, again bailing out banks and borrowers. And according to the Heritage Foundation his support for amnesty legislation would have cost taxpayers $2.6trillion.
Voters to Judge McCain on what He Has Yet to Do
A new video shows Senator McCain saying he is confident that voters will judge him not for what he has done for Arizona during his 28 years in Washington, but bizarrely what he might do for them. That might be a good strategy on the part of Arizona’s senior senator, as the video shows puzzled voters trying to answer the question, “What has Senator McCain done for Arizona?”
The video, called “McCain on McCain,” was released today by the campaign of JD Hayworth, the conservative challenger to the moderate McCain.
The video can be seen by clicking here.
In the video, Sen. McCain is heard saying that he is confident that the people of Arizona will “…judge me on not what I’ve done for them, but what they think I can do for them.” Most politicians who have spent as many years in the U.S. Senate as McCain has would be expected to run on their record – not their potential.
Limits on Free Speech
McCain and Democrat Sen. Russ Feingold teamed up to create the McCain-Feingold Campaign Finance Reform, placing extreme limits on the freedom of speech during election campaign seasons.
Citizens United, a conservative non-profit organization that produced a documentary movie highly critical of then-candidate Hillary Clinton, wanted to distribute the move via video-on-demand technology, and run ads promoting the movie. The FEC ruled that they could not, under the electioneering communications sections of McCain-Feingold, air commercials promoting the movie or distribute the movie via video-on-demand technology. Citizens United appealed, and in June 2009 the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would re-hear oral arguments in the case specifically on the issue of whether they should overturn Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce, a 1990 decision permitting bans on independent expenditures in campaigns by corporations and unions. Oral arguments were held on September 9, 2009.
On January 21, 2010 in an unusual special session, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of Citizens United. It is a transformative which restores the First Amendment rights of businesses, unions and nonprofit advocacy groups to participate in campaigns. It’s an extraordinary win for free political speech rights by speakers of all stripes.
Gang of 14
“[T]he McCain Gang of 14 was a disaster that snatched defeat from the jaws of victory on judicial nominations.
Wendy Long, Bench Memo, National Review Online, February 5, 2008:
“In May 2005, Senate Republican leadership had worked for months to make sure they had the votes for the constitutional option. We were ready to put an end to judicial filibusters that liberals had used to kill great nominations.
“And then Senator McCain and his Gang of 14 arrogated the power to their little clique to determine what nominees would make it and what nominees would not, based on a subjective and undefined standard.
Michael Gaynor, Renew America, February 6, 2008
“I don’t know much about economics.” FactCheck: Said–then denied–he needed economics education. (Jan 2008)
Skipped voting against a government-funded Woodstock museum.
2000: Criticized Bush’s withdrawal from the Kyoto Treaty. (Jan 2004)
1st Republican to sign onto reducing GHGS. (May 2002)
Voted YES on banning drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (Mar 2005)
Voted NO on Bush Administration Energy Policy. (Jul 2003)
Voted YES on removing consideration of drilling ANWR from budget bill. (Mar 2003)
Voted NO on drilling ANWR on national security grounds. (Apr 2002)
Voted NO on terminating CAFE standards within 15 months. (Mar 2002)