McCain & Iseman

You may have heard stories of an alleged affair between John McCain and Vicki Iseman – who happens to be a lobbyist. Is this gutter politics or is there something here? Josh Marshall has an interesting discussion of the possibilities.

Update: McCain says there was no affair but he didn’t address this:

In late 1999, McCain twice wrote letters to the Federal Communications Commission on behalf of Florida-based Paxson Communications – which had paid Iseman as its lobbyist – urging quick consideration of a proposal to buy a television station license in Pittsburgh. At the time, Paxson’s chief executive, Lowell W. “Bud” Paxson, also was a major contributor to McCain’s 2000 presidential campaign. McCain did not urge the FCC commissioners to approve the proposal, but he asked for speedy consideration of the deal, which was pending from two years earlier. In an unusual response, then-FCC Chairman William Kennard complained that McCain’s request “comes at a sensitive time in the deliberative process” and “could have procedural and substantive impacts on the commission’s deliberations and, thus, on the due process rights of the parties.” McCain wrote the letters after he received more than $20,000 in contributions from Paxson executives and lobbyists. Paxson also lent McCain his company’s jet at least four times during 1999 for campaign travel.

Update II: I stand corrected. Paul Kiel notes a reporter asked McCain about the FCC matter. McCain offered an answer but Paul argues that this answer was less than candid.