Hardly surprising, the NYT takes an axe to Cindy McCain today: Behind McCain, Outsider in Capital Wanting Back In
Let’s take a look at that headline: “Wanting back in.” Back in what? McCain’s been a sitting Senator since 1986. Prior to that, he was a Congressman from 1982-1986. John and Cindy McCain married in 1980. It’s not as if McCain had lost his Senate or Congress seat and was trying to get back into Washington.
Never mind that the Obama campaign has John Glenn, one of the Keating five, stumping for Obama, Cindy’s ripped over the Keating five while the Glenn/Obama connection is ignored.
Anyway, the rest of the article is entirely designed to make Cindy McCain look gadawful. First she’s
nearly two decades younger than her husband and just five years older than his eldest-son
but a few hundred words later she’s a wee wifey, a frail and brittle little old lady who can barely keep up with things,
Observers of that campaign and the current one say she seems different this time — more guarded, more tense, superthin. She rarely campaigns away from her husband’s side, and yet their interactions on the trail often appear brief and formal. During the rolling primary-season seminars that Mr. McCain held in the back of his bus, Mrs. McCain sat up front. Once in a while, she joined him, sitting very straight, smiling and saying little. Physically, she seems fragile: she suffers from migraines, hobbled around on crutches last year after a knee injury and recently wore a wrist brace because of a handshaking injury.
Let’s take a closer look at this because all the aromatic rich flavor of the NYT piece resides in that paragraph: Since she’s not a Democrat, she’s
more guarded, more tense, superthin
after all, not every Presidential candidate’s rich wife can be Teresa Heinz, who definitely was not guarded or tense at all, never mind “superthin”.
According to the NYT Cindy’s both distant and close:
She rarely campaigns away from her husband’s side, and yet their interactions on the trail often appear brief and formal.
And she didn’t join in the seminars
During the rolling primary-season seminars that Mr. McCain held in the back of his bus, Mrs. McCain sat up front.
But when she did, she sat up straight:
Once in a while, she joined him, sitting very straight, smiling and saying little.
The Husband better not run for office or the NYT, too, would fault me for “sitting very straight” and smiling, two bad habits I indulge in frequently.
And Abracadabra! the nearly-two-decades-younger-than-her-husband-and-just-five-years- older-than-his-eldest-son babe has turned into a brittle old crone with a headache
Physically, she seems fragile: she suffers from migraines, hobbled around on crutches last year after a knee injury and recently wore a wrist brace because of a handshaking injury.
Let’s review the crone part:
I hope these pictures clear that point for you.
And where did the NYT go digging for dirt on Cindy?
Facebook. Facebook pages of sixteen-year-olds who went to the same school as the McCain children.
Investigative reporting at its best, from the Grey Lady.
Trolling for dirt on Facebook among teenagers for hit pieces on a candidate’s spouse hits a new low. Does the National Enquirer even do that?
UPDATE, Sunday 19 October
Letter from Cindy McCain’s attorney to the NYT, via Media Lizzy
Dear Mr. Keller:
I represent Cindy McCain. I write to appeal to your sense of fairness, balance and decency in deciding whether to publish another story about her. I do this well knowing your obvious bias for Barack Obama and your obvios bias hositility to John McCain. I ask you to put your biases and agendas aside.
I understand that Cindy is in the public eye, but you have already profiled her extensively (Jennifer Steinhauer reported), written about her financial situation (including an editorial on her tax returns) and about her role at Hensley and Company.
I am advised that you assigned two of your top investigative reporters who have spent an extensive amount of time in Arizona and around the country investigating Cindy’s life including her charity, her addiction and her marriage to Senator McCain. None of these subjects are news.
I am also advised that your reporters are speaking to Tom Gosinski and her cousin Jamie Clark, neither of whom are reliable or credible sources. Mr. Gosinski has been publicly exposed as a liar and blackmailer on the subject of Cindy McCain. Jamie Clark has very serious drug and stability issues and has failed in a number of attempts to blackmail Cindy. She is simply not credible.
In 1994, Mr. Gosinski drafted a civil complaint for damages claiming, among other things, that Cindy had defamed him with prospective employers after he was discharged from AVMT. Those allegations were utterly false. He was unable to produce any prospective employers and Cindy had not discussed his deficiencies as an employee with anyone outside of AVMT. Indeed, his termination was demonstrated to be appropriate and when he was let go, Cindy gave him severance pay. When confronted with this evidence, his lawyer resigned. Gosinski never filed the complaint in Court and could produce no evidence to support any of its allegations. He attempted to have Cindy pay him $250,000 in exchange for not filing the complaint. Cindy refused and made his attempt to extort her public.
Thereafter, he amended his complaint to allege that Cindy asked him to commit perjury in the adoption proceed involving Bridget McCain. The notes of Cindy’s counsel and the official transcript of the adoption proceedings clearly demonstrate that Gosinski’s was never asked to lie and did not falsely testify in the proceeding. His allegation was an utter fabrication. Gosinski further alleged that Cindy used his name to obtain pain killers for her own personal use. The records of AVMT show that Dr. Max Johnson, licensed by the DEA to order drugs, directed the use of employee names on the prescriptions. The drugs obtained using Mr. Gosinski’s name were used and donated on an AVMT trip to El Salvador. They were not used by Cindy.
These allegations and efforts to hurt Cindy have been a matter of public record for sixteen years. Cindy has been quite open and frank about her issues for all these years. Any further attempts to harass and injure her based on the information from Gosinski and Clark will be met with an appropriate response. While she may be in the public eye, she is not public property nor the property of the press to abuse and defame.
It is worth noting that you have not employed your investigative assets looking into Michelle Obama. You have not tried to find Barack Obama’s drug dealer that he wrote about in his book, Dreams of My Father. Nor have you interviewed his poor relatives in Kenya and determined why Barack Obama has not rescued them. Thus, there is a terrific lack of balance here.
I suggest to you that none of these subjects on either side are worthy of the energy and resources of The New York Times. They are cruel hit pieces designed to injure people that only the worst rag would investigate and publish. I know you and your colleagues are always preaching about raising the level of civil discourse in our political campaigns. I think taking some your own medicine is in order here.
I ask you to let Cindy McCain carry on in her usual understated, selfless and dignified way. The fabrications and lies of blackmailers are not fit to print in any newspaper but particularly not in The New York Times.
John M. Dowd
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP