August 15th, 2008
07:10 PM ET
6 years ago

New DNC Web video tries to link McCain to Abramoff scandal

ALT TEXT

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Democratic National Committee’s is taking on John McCain in a new Web video calling into question his reputation as a campaign finance reformer and a maverick who stands outside the inner circles of political dealings in the nation’s capital.

The online video accuses McCain of “cozying up” to the “cronies” of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who pled guilty in 2006 to federal charges of fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy to bribe public officials.

The video takes issue with McCain’s fundraising ties to Ralph Reed, a former business partner of Abramoff. “While most people now see Ralph Reed as a tainted man raising tainted money, John McCain sees him as a source of campaign cash,” a narrator in the video says.

Reed recently sent out an e-mail that urged Republicans in Georgia to attend a planned Republican National Committee fundraiser for McCain scheduled for next Monday in Atlanta.

The Democratic National Committee said that Rep. Henry Waxman, D-California, will call for McCain to cancel the planned fundraiser in a conference call with reporters on Friday morning.

Update 7:10 pm: Alex Conant, spokesman for the Republican National Committee released the following statement in responce to the DNC's new web video: “It’s laughable Democrats would try to make this a political issue, considering John McCain led the Abramoff investigations and has record of fighting to reform Washington, while Barack Obama’s brief political career already has its own fundraising scandals.”

(full script after the jump)

Script, DNC Web ad “Tainted”

VOICEOVER: “On the campaign trail, John McCain claims that he fought to expose Jack Abramoff and his corrupt cronies…”

MCCAIN: “And I led the investigation.”

VOICEOVER: “It was a scandal that rocked the country, linking all the way to the Bush White House and Republicans in Congress, sending two former Republican Congressmen to prison.

“But, now, desperate to raise campaign cash to run more negative attack ads, John McCain is cozying up to Jack Abramoff’s cronies.

“Ralph Reed, a key business partner of Jack Abramoff helped the convicted former Republican lobbyist launder 2 million dollars through a front group to finance a gambling campaign.

“Now, Ralph Reed has signed up to raise money for John McCain. Reed has even been appointed to McCain’s Victory 2008 Team.

“Ralph Reed’s murky connections to Jack Abramoff run so deep, it cost him a race for Lt. Governor in Georgia.

“While most people now see Ralph Reed as a tainted man raising tainted money, John McCain sees him as a source of campaign cash.

“John McCain – more of the same old politics.”


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (251 Responses)
  1. Joe in StL

    This is just the tip of the iceberg. McCain's corruption goes far beyond this. You won't read about it here, though.

    August 15, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  2. Paul from Texas

    McCain is not sqeaky clean IE the saving and loan scandal years ago,
    Keating 5,missing 63% of all votes in the Senate and on and on. Lawyers also donate to McCain! And him being old is a fact not a problem a fact. Also my friend he thinks we all are his friends my friends and my friends I have figured he says my friends my friends instead of saying AHHHHHHHHHHH?

    August 15, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  3. Montana is Obama Country

    lobbyist Jack Abramoff brought DOWN Conrad BURNS in Montana

    and

    lobbyist Jack Abramoff is in the pocket of JOHN MCCAIN..

    John McNegative is a BUSH THIRD TERM...!!

    NO MORE BUSHIES...

    August 15, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  4. Chap Dog

    Hey joe -
    Are talking about Senator McCain being the adulterer? Becasue between Senator Obama and Senator McCain only one has committed adultry and since you clearly are uninformed, let me fill you in, it was Senator McCain.

    August 15, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  5. Farnk, Las Vegas

    It's about time we started looking at John McCain for what he really is. Let's all remember the Savings and Loan scandals of the past, that cost American tax payers Billions of dollars in bailout money. Who was in the very small group of Senators to keep the one's responsible out of jail, let them go free with their millions of dollars ( your dollars), John McCain, front and center of the Keeding Five. Let the guilty have millions of dollars and go free, that's John McCain's way, screw the little guy. John McSame as president, I don't think so. The more you know about John McCain, the more scared you will get. Not only does he use the same Old ways, he is at the center of the same OLD ways.

    August 15, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  6. Lost (maybe) in CNN Moderation

    Anybody who thinks that Reed wasn't involved in Abramoffs shady dealing ....I've got some discounted Hillary 08 bumper stickers for ya!

    August 15, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  7. Shrill for Hill

    radar,
    They can't address they actual point, they have nothing. So the plan is to scare the American people into voting republican. It worked in the last election, why not now?

    Has McCain mention that he was shot down in Vietnam today?

    August 15, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  8. SDunn

    Sandy August 15th, 2008 8:59 am ET

    I would like to see more information on McCain's links to Georgia.

    I am confused as to why he felt he needed to send Lieberman and others (at taxpayer's expense) when Rice was already going as a representative of our government.

    Why has McCain been to Georgia so many times? There is something fishy here.
    --------------------------------
    Exactly Sandy, because McCain has someone working on his campaign who has lobbyist ties to Georgia.

    August 15, 2008 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  9. Shrill for Hill

    “While most people now see Ralph Reed as a tainted man raising tainted money, John McCain sees him as a source of campaign cash."

    Ralph Reed and John McCain – a couple of taints

    August 15, 2008 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  10. cecil

    More Tax Deceptions factcheck.org
    August 8, 2008
    Updated: August 12, 2008
    McCain misrepresents Obama's tax proposals again. And again, and again.

    Why Would You Want To Believe His New Tax Ad Now!

    He Continues To LIE!

    McScaremonger

    August 15, 2008 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  11. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    “Ralph Reed, a key business partner of Jack Abramoff helped the convicted former Republican lobbyist launder 2 million dollars through a front group to finance a gambling campaign.

    If that is true, Why was Ralph Reed not imprisoned? Maybe because he had not done anything wrong.

    Lies !!!!!

    August 15, 2008 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  12. SDunn

    Dan, TX August 15th, 2008 8:52 am ET

    What a pathetic reach. Ever heard of Tony REZKO?????
    --------------------------------
    Ever heard of Keating 5, Dan????? Want to bring that up again do you?

    August 15, 2008 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  13. Justin Castro

    The current system of candidates raising half a billion dollars to run for office should be concern to all Americans. Both candidates take big money from high profile people with giant corporate interest.

    August 15, 2008 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  14. MIKE

    THANK YOU GUYS FOR YOUR VIEWS I USED TO LIKE McCAIN EVEN WHEN HE LOST AGAINST G. BUSH, BUT NOW HE LOST EVERYTHING...I MEAN ALL HIS SELF ESTEEM AND INTEGRITY BECAUSE OF WHITE HOUSE? I HOPE HE KNOWS HE HIS LOOSING FANS EVERYDAY.

    August 15, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  15. Georgia, USA

    Keating 5 on the way. wait until the DNC hits mccain on the S&L scandal he was involved in where people lost their entire life savings and retirements to mccain and his buddies' scams. MCcain is worth $100 million, has 10 luxury homes, owns a private plane, and his trophy wife has yet to release her real tax returns. what r the GOP elitest hiding? Obama n family barely worth 900k and just paid off student loans. Whose out of touch?

    rezko trial came and went and obama was never even mentioned. good luck on him buying a lot next to obama's house.

    August 15, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  16. roger

    check out the new polls tha CNN refuses to report people…

    Virginia: Mccaine has now taken a +1 lead over Obama….from an Obama +3 lead last month.

    North Carolina: Mccaine +6

    Mn: Last month Obama +12…this month down to +4

    Nevada: Mccaine overtakes lead from Obama this month

    Colorado: Mccaine now leading Obama…first time Mccaine leading in Poll.

    Stick with it people…..we can and will stop this socialist and his cult from overtaking and ruining our country….Regular people with independant thought processes are figuring this man out!

    Cnn…as always thanks for the unbiased coverage

    August 15, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  17. Natasha

    Let's not forget the close door fundraiser meeting McCain had with Bush this year.

    August 15, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  18. Sue

    I have yet to see a commercial from McCain that is positive. I have yet to find anything positive or of substance from the 'straight talk express' guy.

    Obama is still running a positive campaign.

    August 15, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  19. INDEPENDENT NYC

    I agree with most of the blogger – follow the money and you can determine why the candidate is doing what he is doing.

    Every time McCain has flip/flopped it has been very shortly after he receives a maximum donation from a contributor. For example, McCain was against off shore drilling until he received a donation from top executives in 3 of the major oil companies in excess of 3 millions. After the funds were clear in the bank McCain announced that he is reversing his position on off shore drilling and now is in favor of it.

    McCain offers a government for sale. Contributions are one thing but changing your position because of the contributions spell corruption.

    August 15, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  20. Jamison

    These latest ads from Obama have proven to me he is no different a politician than the rest.

    As an independent looking for a change in Washington, it is clear with Obama's change on positions based on polls or pressure from his far left base accompanied by the politics of smear, that he is by far the worst candidate in this race.

    I, and most other independent I know will be voting for John McCain in November.

    August 15, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  21. David

    Obama's callin the kettel black (pardon the pun)

    More of His Chicago ties will be exposed like Rizieko and then where will he be???????

    August 15, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  22. SDunn

    Well since the media is giving McCain a free ride it's about time someone brought this up. It's time that McCain finally gets vetted during this election cycle. People need to know the truth about McCain especially young voters. I don't care how long he's been in office; he still needs to be vetted.

    August 15, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  23. kevin

    just go to McCainslobbyist.com and see where he will send your tax dollars..to his friends. mccain is corrupt do we want that again?

    August 15, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  24. Lindsay

    Good old Karma. Should have seen this coming, GOP, after all the years you've based your campaigns on tearing down the other guy.

    August 15, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  25. M. Winners, Mesa, AZ

    I just saw McLame on TV re: the ABBA thing and this guy just doesn't look good to me.
    Is he sick and his campaign is not telling us, or worse yet, lying to us about his health? Why all of a sudden no more open talking to the press, limited speaking engagements and weekends off?
    I want to know, is McLame healthy enough to be POTUS?
    Will he make it thru the campaign?
    I want some straight answers for a change about his physical well being...

    August 15, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
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