February 19th, 2009
05:48 PM ET
6 years ago

Lobbyist drops lawsuit against New York Times

McCain adamantly denied that he had an affair with lobbyist Vicki Iseman.
McCain adamantly denied that he had an affair with lobbyist Vicki Iseman.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Washington lobbyist Vicki Iseman has dropped her libel suit against the New York Times, the paper announced Thursday.

The Times said the paper did not retract the article and that the lawsuit was settled without payment. Instead, the paper will allow Iseman’s lawyers to “give their views on the suit” on the paper’s Web site.

The lawyers wrote that the negotiation process with the newspaper was "rational" and led to "a civilized resolution."

The defamation suit contended that the Times improperly suggested in a lengthy February 2008 article that Iseman had begun an affair with John McCain in 1999, before McCain undertook his first presidential run. Iseman’s lawyers also said the article implied that she unethically profited from her relationship with McCain.

McCain and his advisers used the article and its use of unnamed sources to blast the Times as biased against the then-presidential candidate as he cruised to the Republican nomination.

The two sides issued a joint statement on the paper’s Web site stating that “Ms. Iseman has accepted The Times’s explanation, which will appear in a Note to Readers to be published in the newspaper on Feb. 20, that the article did not state, and The Times did not intend to conclude, that Ms. Iseman had engaged in a romantic affair with Senator McCain or an unethical relationship on behalf of her clients in breach of the public trust.”

Times executive editor Bill Keller told the paper that the lawsuit “was settled without money changing hands, and without The Times backing away from the story.”


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. Bridgette-PA

    Either it happened, or it didn't. Either way, he's not my husband and he's not my president.......SO I DON'T CARE!

    February 19, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  2. cherrystrawberry

    LOL. They showed her some evidence. why else would she drop the suit?!?!?!? LOL

    February 19, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  3. Independent_me

    No money to settle?
    Then the Times had something solid that proved she had the affair, and this is just a way of allowing her to exit the lawsuit while saving face...

    February 19, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  4. Dick Williams

    If the Times did not intend and did not suggest an affair between the two, why print any follow-up article? Why put it on the front page? Why print it while a Presidential election was going on? Not only does the Times ALWAYS SUPPORT THE DEMOCRATIC NOMINEE, Fact is the last Republican the N.Y.Times backed for president against the democratic nominee was DWIGHT DAVID EISENHAUER-only a few elections ago, right. Sounds very politically "OBJECTIVE." Does any intellingent voter really think that no Republican nominee was a better candidate for president than the democratic one, in 52 years, over 13 presidential elections. Duh!!

    February 19, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  5. no to corporate politics

    They had the effect they wanted. They trashed someone's life, helped get their darling candidate his votes, and moved on. Now when it is safe and pro-Obama fans will not change their spoon-fed opinion, they kinda apologize.

    The M-ssiah doesn't walk on water – he walks on bodies.

    February 19, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  6. Steve

    It's good to hear the two sides reached an equitable solution. Whatever the back story is, a court case would have made it worse.
    Give us the news. Give us the truth. Keep the innuendo, rumors, and half-truths to yourselves. If, in fact the two had an affair (which I seriously doubt) it isn't the public's business. It is between them and their families to resolve.

    February 19, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  7. ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

    that just makes the skin crawl, what a old wrinkled person

    I would have started court action against the Times too

    like what I heard about the Brazilian model and Mick Jaggar, her response was ewwwwwwww, old and wrinklely, when asked what her encounter was like with him

    February 19, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  8. Proud American

    In other words it can be proven the report was true.

    February 19, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  9. California Girl

    Why do we continue to care about what two consenting adults do on their own time? I am SO NOT interested in hearing any more about any sexual picadilloes from our elected officials.

    February 19, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  10. GW BUSH 2001 1.35 trillion dollars TAX CUT for the RICH

    she just needs to own up to the TRUTH with her infidelity with the old man and get a job at FALSENEWS!

    that's where all the air-head report their talking points from the RICH OLD WHITE GUYS AND REDNECKS WANNABE REPUBLIKLANS COULTERS ARE ANYWAYZ!!!!!

    February 19, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  11. Mike in Houston

    The New York Times has become a business completely lacking in objectivity. It is a slander-rag.

    February 19, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  12. Irma in North Carolina

    I would not believe anything Mccain said, he lied throught out his whole campaign. He was probably wishing it was Sarah who they were talking about.

    February 19, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  13. Lilly Rose

    I never believed this woman had an affair with McCain. I mean, ick! Seriously, ick!

    February 19, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  14. Dawn, FL

    Who cares? McCain had an affair with Cindy Lou after they met, so this isn't such a stretch for me.

    Move, on CNN, no news here.

    February 19, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  15. Sunshine

    Absolutely....LOL Otherwise the paper would have retracted it's story.

    February 19, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  16. ray ray

    The Times has agreed to print the following statement:

    "The Times did not intend to conclude, that Ms. Iseman had engaged in a romantic affair with Senator McCain or an unethical relationship on behalf of her clients in breach of the public trust.”

    In other words – The Times got spanked!!

    February 19, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  17. yuri

    Let's move, on people! And we reckon it is extremely hard for the CNN to act as English teachers when they read a spate of comments with a numer of grammatical, syntactical, and spelling errors.

    McCain, being a war hero, sholud be able to handle like a true trooper.

    February 19, 2009 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  18. Nick

    It seems the Times had more proof than she expected. Why else would she drop the suit and why else would the time "stand by the story"? We are getting the full picture here....

    February 19, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  19. Ula Nejad Sacramento, Ca

    Evidently it makes it more prudent to follow California's soon to be reform on electing candidates. Candidates should be thoroughly turned inside out and the their constituents held responsible for their candidates. Or we can expect more of the same, legislators walking out of hotels with someone other than their wife. Please.. even the white house is not "untouchable" anymore.

    February 19, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  20. Lance

    Ummm there is no evidence which is why I am having trouble understanding The NY Times claim that "The Times did not intend to conclude, that Ms. Iseman had engaged in a romantic affair with Senator McCain or an unethical relationship on behalf of her clients in breach of the public trust." when that was exactly the intent of the article.

    February 19, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  21. Jackie in Dallas

    Why would this be a big surprise to anyone? McCain was famous for his infidelities during his time in the military (except while a POW, of course). Then he dumped his first wife who stuck by him during his days as a POW as soon as he could after a life-threatening injury she sustained to marry multi-millionaire bimbo Cindy. I never understood why more wasn't made of this man's disgusting personal life during the campaign, except that President Obama didn't want to sink to that level.

    As for this lady, you just don't file a suit against the New York Times for defamation of character, then back off without it looking suspiciously like they did show her evidence they could back up the story. Going against an institution like the NYTimes is not wise unless you are crystal pure and have lots of evidence on your side.

    February 19, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  22. Rick

    @Jackie in Dallas:

    And I'm sure you said the same thing about Bill Clinton's "disgusting personal life", right?

    February 19, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  23. Robin

    Oh goodie. More meat for the hate-filled libs to knaw on.

    February 19, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  24. JL

    What's up with people who's last name starts with "Is" being so partisan and petty in today's news? I hope people remember all of this republican hypocracy, obstructionist tactics, lies, and complete degrading and patronizing disrespect of the POTUS when they go to the voting booth in 2010 and 2012. We tend to have very short memories in this country.

    February 19, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  25. Gene

    Sorry.. no idea whether this is true or not... but for someone to drop a lawsuit which would be so easily won if there was no evidence to support their claims...

    The only conclusion I could come to is that the Times showed her some evidence of something.. and rather than let it go public.. she decided to recede into the shadows. If the Times truly had nothing on her and McCain... She could've and would've taken them for a nice hefty paycheck. After all.. she had already gone to her lawyers.. they wouldn't just drop a case unpaid unless there was something that's being hidden that they don't want exposed.

    February 19, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
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