Yesterday, I posted about a largely unreported incident between John and Cindy McCain that Cliff Schecter has included in his new book The Real McCain: Why Conservatives Don't Trust Him and Why Independents Shouldn't. Cliff's book, which will come out next month, is full of exhaustively researched tidbits on John McCain that his buddies in the media are loathe to bring up and which points out the lie in his carefully crafted reputation as a maverick. I spoke to Cliff yesterday and asked him if he would give C&L another incident that shows McCain's character as it truly is. I particularly liked this one, as it exemplifies how McCain's rhetoric doesn't often match up with his voting record, and moreover, how he frames the discussion in combat terms, as if to remind anyone who disagrees of his "war hero" status:
McCain made a big speech when Republicans were voting for Bush's bill to get rid of the Estate Tax. He called those who supported it "whiners" while those fighting were "sacrificing for their country" and that it should not be "eliminated during a time of war." He has now flip-flopped and wants to make it permanent (and even took the lead in May of '06 to do it!). There has been more out there on his flip-flop on Bush's taxes overall, but not much if anything on this specific statement and position. And it is important, as the Estate Tax is specifically for the rich. Voting for that bill back then, however, was "a far cry from sacrifice."
Cliff has been working on The Real McCain for quite some time and he promises there are tons of stuff (and I'm going to work on him to give us more exclusives) that show John McCain as he really is, such as his fisticuffs with *Rep. Rick Renzi after McCain repeatedly tried to humiliate him. I am going to buy a copy of the book--just $10!--not only to show my support for someone in our progressive community, but also to give to a family member who to my horror, said that they would be voting for McCain if their Democratic candidate didn't win the nomination an idea of how the maverick persona is one of media creation and bears little resemblance to the real man.
*corrected to reflect that Renzi is a member of the House, not the Senate.