A new Public Policy Polling survey revealed Thursday that Sen. John McCain is the least popular senator in the country, with an approval rating of only 30 percent among Arizona voters.
McCain scored low with both Republicans and Democrats.
Some 44 percent of Arizona voters disapprove of McCain’s job performance and 16 percent aren’t sure, according to the left-leaning poll.
Among fellow Republicans, McCain has only a 35 percent approval rating. Among Democrats, his approval rating is only 29 percent.
Though the Republican senator isn’t up for reelection until 2016, the poll suggests his time as a congressman is up. While he hasn't announced another run, McCain said he is still considering reelection.
McCain has served in the U.S. Congress since 1982. He was elected to the Senate in 1986.
PPP conducted the poll among 870 registered Arizona voters.
Arizona State Sen. Steve Pierce voted for a bill that would allow businesses in Arizona to refuse services to gay people for religious reasons. He has now changed his tune and is urging Gov. Jan Brewer to veto the legislation that passed the state legislature last week, reports United Press International (UPI).
“I screwed up,I’m trying to make it right, Pierce is quoted as saying to Capitol Media Services in the story. “I would be on board to get it repealed.”
After its passage last week, SB 1062, has gained national attention. Fearing it paints an unfavorable picture of the state, many have called on Brewer to veto the bill. ABC News reports that both Republican U.S. Senators from Arizona, John McCain and Jeff Flake, have joined in calls for veto from their Twitter accounts.
Proponents of the bill say it has been unfairly characterized by the national media and that Brewer should ignore the national attention and sign the bill.
Cathi Herrod of the Center for Arizona Policy, the architect of the bill, told UPI that opponents, “have hijacked this discussion through lies, personal attacks and irresponsible reporting.”
Pierce agreed that the purpose of the legislation was not to discriminate against gays.
"To say (the bill is) anti-gay is following the feeding frenzy," he said. "I have friends that are gay and I wouldn't do anything to hurt them. This is blown way out of proportion and it's too bad."
However, it doesn’t look like he will backing down from his new position.
"I don't like the negative picture of Arizona, and I'm on board asking the governor to veto the bill," he told the Prescott Daily Courier on Saturday.
Brewer has until Friday to make a decision on what to do with the bill. She has three choices: She can veto it, sign it and make it or law, or simply not sign it. If she does not sign the bill it still becomes law.
Brewer told CNN, "I have to look at what it says and what the law says and take that information and do the right thing.”
The decision of the Associated Press and The Washington Post to publish the story of Robert Levinson, a man who went missing in Iran in 2007 and was working for the CIA, drew sharp criticism from other media outlets and readers/internet commenters. However, on CNN’s media show Reliable Sources, reporter Matt Abuzzo and “the senior-most editor” at the AP said that their rationale for publishing the story was that “Bob Levinson was not well-served by his government” and to “make sure this can’t happen again.” It has been three years since Levinson’s captors made contact with his family, and the prevailing idea is that he hasn’t survived his captivity.
Arizona Senator John McCain has weighed in on the controversy—not over the publication of the story, but the story that the CIA has told Congress since his capture—saying that the CIA has not been honest with legislators about him. On CNN’s State of the Union McCain also levied criticism at the Obama administration for keeping the story under wraps. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said that the report was “highly irresponsible” and reaffirms that Levinson was not “an employee” of the government when he went missing.
On CBS’s Face the Nation Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif said that Levinson was not being detained by the government in Iran and that they would “discuss” returning him to America if he is found. “Anything is possible,” he said, then added, “But I’m saying that we have no trace of him in Iran.” On This Week on ABC, Secretary of State John Kerry said that the US has not abandoned Levinson—despite his activities being unsanctioned—and they are currently “looking for proof of life.” Yet all of this brings no consolation to Levinson’s family, demanding to meet with recently installed head of the FBI James Comey.
A Human Rights Campaign organizer convinced Cindy McCain to sign a petition on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which protects LGBT employees from discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation and gender identity, the Washington Post reports.
However, Cindy McCain’s husband, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) still needs to decide how he will vote to support ENDA, citing landmark civil rights legislation could lead to “busing” and “reverse discrimination” as his reason.
McCain told the Huffington Post: “Whether it imposes quotas, whether it has reverse discrimination, whether it has the kinds of provisions that really preserve equal rights for all citizens or, like for example, busing. Busing was done in the name of equality. Busing was a failure. Quotas were a failure. A lot of people thought they were solutions. They weren’t. They bred problems.”
McCain added that others, specifically young people, have the same opinion as him.
“I think the young people know we do not need reverse discrimination, they don’t believe in quotas and they don't believe in some of the programs we saw in the name of racial equality implemented in the past which turned out to be counterproductive,” he said.
Tico Almeid, founder and president of Freedom to Work, told the Huffington Post that ENDA bans quotas in particular. He said his group already discussed the legislation with McCain’s office and a follow-up meeting will be held sometime this week, where they will call attention to the section of the law that bans quotas.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Monday that the Senate will bring ENDA up for a vote during the current work period, which ends the week before Thanksgiving.
Currently, ENDA has 56 supporters in the Senate, and Senator-elect Cory Booker (D-N.J.) will make 57 once he takes office this week, putting it just below the 60-vote threshold needed to clear the Senate.
Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert and Senator John McCain are currently engaged in an epically childish war of words. Under most circumstances it would be unbelievable to hear two adults stoop to this level of silliness in public. But they are congressmen, after all, so anything goes.
The two have spent the last two days finding fancy ways to say “You’re stupid!”
The tift started over comments Gomhert made at a Values Voter Summit in which he argued that McCain’s support for Syrian rebels is equivalent to supporting Al Qaeda since, after all, Al Qaeda forces are aiding Syrian rebels.
“I heard just before I came some senator from Arizona,” Gohmert said. “A guy that liked Qadaffi before he wanted to bomb him, a guy that liked Mubarak before he wanted him out, a guy that’s been to Syria and supported Al-Qaeda and rebels.”
So of course NBC had to ask McCain for a response to Gomhert’s comments. Because nothing says journalism in America like hyping up political gossip.
“Sometimes those are, comments like that are made out of malice, but if someone has no intelligence, I don’t view it as being a malicious statement,” McCain said. “You can’t respond to that kind of thing.” (unless, of course, you respond to that kind of thing.)
The good ol' “Well you don’t have a brain!” zinger. Nice one, John.
Of course Louie couldn’t let McCain’s jab go unanswered. His answer was just as mature as you’d expect at this point.
“Obviously, Senator McCain would be better off with ‘no intelligence’ since he does not know the Syrian opposition he met with is infested with al Qaeda and terrorist kidnappers,” Gohmert responded in a statement to the Daily Beast. “His ‘intelligence’ even caused him to support the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt that burned churches and killed Christians, as the senator stood against the will of the massive majority of Egyptians including moderate Muslims, Christians, and secularists who demanded the Muslim Brotherhood extremist persecutions must end.”
These are your fine elected officials, ladies and gentlemen. If you can’t tell the difference between the way Gohmert and MacCain are arguing and the way middle school children argue, that’s because there isn’t one.
The U.S. government shutdown, which finally ended this morning after 16 days with no one quite sure what any of it accomplished, didn’t exactly bring out the best in many of our nation’s leaders — particularly on the Republican side as the party appeared to splinter before the country’s eyes.
Arizona Senator John McCain managed to emerge as one of the more level-headed Republicans throughout this mess, which earned him the scorn of some of his more extreme colleagues.
Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert has earned a reputation for making outrageous, unsupported and downright vituperative statements. The latest came last Friday and was directed McCain's way.
Speaking in Washington D.C. at the Value Voters summit last Friday, Gohmert unleashed one of his patented zingers in McCain’s direction, saying that the onetime Republican presidential nominee should be ignored when he speaks out against the shutdown because the Vietnam veteran and former prisoner of war supported anti-American terrorism.
Addressing the Value Voters audience, a gathering of the party’s most far-right supporters, Gohmert referred to McCain thusly, as, “A guy that liked Qadaffi before he wanted to bomb him, a guy that liked Mubarak before he wanted him out, a guy that's been to Syria and supported Al-Qaeda and rebels."
Then Gohmert got to what set him off.
“He was saying today 'The shutdown has been a fool's errand.' And I agree with him. The President and Harry Reid should not have shut this government down.”
Okay, whatever. But you’d think that being called a backer of the organization that committed the 9/11 attacks as well as several other of the worst terror attacks against Americans in history would get McCain’s blood boiling. But in an interview with NBC’s Brian Williams last night, McCain had a nonchalant retort.
“On that particular issue, sometimes comments like that are made out of malice,” McCain said. “But if someone has no intelligence, I don’t view it as being a malicious statement. You can’t respond to that kind of thing.”
Gohmert later tried to wriggle away from his bizarre insult toward McCain, saying on the floor oftyhe house that “some people have tried to take things I said in an inappropriate way.”
Watch the whole interview between Williams and McCain below.
SOURCES: The Hill, Atlantic Wire, Chicago Tribune
Calling the government shutdown a “fool’s errand,” Senator John McCain admitted on Fox News Friday that the GOP was ultimately responsible for the debacle in Washington.
McCain has long fought the Affordable Care Act, but he was not among those who kept pushing to the very end to defund it. And although he does not hold the Obama administration blameless for the shutdown, he acknowledges that GOP extremists forced the government into its current mess.
"Let's have a little straight talk, Martha," McCain said. "[The Obama administration] wouldn't have had the opportunity to handle it that way if we had not shut down the government on a fool's errand that we were not going to accomplish. The whole premise of shutting down the government was the repeal of Obamacare. I fought against Obamacare harder than any of the people who wanted to shut down the government."
He also called it "unconscionable" that President Obama has not yet sat down to negotiate with Republicans.
Host Martha MacCallum asked McCain how he felt about Senator Ted Cruz speaking for Republicans in a scheduled White House meeting.
"First of all, Martha, please, he's not representing us there," McCain said.
McCain has shown similar disdain for Cruz in the past, particularly after Cruz’s 21-hour “filibuster” in September, when he compared anyone who wouldn’t vote to defund Obamacare to a Nazi appeaser.
"I resoundingly reject that allegation. That allegation, in my view, does a great disservice," said McCain. "I do not agree with that comparison; I think it's wrong. … I do not begrudge Sen. Cruz or any other senator who wants to come talk as long as they want to or as long as they can, depending on the rules of the Senate. But I do disagree strongly that, to allege that there are people today who are like those who, prior to World War II, didn't stand up and oppose the atrocities that were taking place in Europe."
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) penned a scathing op-ed critiquing Russian president Vladimir Putin’s oppressive rule, and succeeded in getting it published in a prominent Russian newspaper. However, it might not have been the paper he initially wanted.
According to Politico, “The Arizona Republican published his anti-Putin piece on Pravda.ru on Thursday, an English and Russian news website that was founded in 1999. But McCain said he was hoping to publish in the Communist newspaper Pravda, meaning “truth” in Russian, which was founded in 1912. That publication, after being banned when the Soviet Union collapsed, was rekindled and is still circulated by today’s Russian Communist Party. Pravda.ru and the paper are unrelated media outlets, except for the name.”
A spokesman for Sen. McCain said Thursday the senator submitted the op-ed to both publications and hoped both would run it, refusing to refer to one as the right or wrong paper. Sen. McCain then told reporters that the Communist one was the Pravda he hoped would publish his piece, but the editor refused to do so unless the senator amended it to support the policy of Pres. Putin regarding Syria.
Sen. McCain’s op-ed, titled “Russians deserve better than Putin,” was a response to Pres. Putin’s own piece in The New York Times last week, which criticized American exceptionalism and argued against American intervention in Syria.
Sen. McCain, a long-time critic of Russia and Pres. Putin fired back, writing:
"A Russian citizen could not publish a testament like the one I just offered. President Putin and his associates do not believe in these values. They don't respect your dignity or accept your authority over them. They punish dissent and imprison opponents. They rig your elections. They control your media. They harass, threaten, and banish organizations that defend your right to self-governance. To perpetuate their power they foster rampant corruption in your courts and your economy and terrorize and even assassinate journalists who try to expose their corruption."
Since President Obama announced that he would seek Congressional approval for a strike against Syrian military targets, the idea that the Free Syria Army is an arm of Al Qaeda has persisted, including amongst members of the US military. Thus the lobbying blitz of both legislators on Capitol Hill and the American people via the Press, proponents of military action against the Assad regime not only have to prove that a strike is warranted, but that America wouldn’t be arming its enemies.
In an appearance on Fox & Friends Tuesday morning, Arizona Senator John McCain addressed those concerns directly. Moments before host Brian Kilmeade threw to Sen. McCain, they had been talking to conservative radio host Laura Ingraham who has said that McCain is backing up “confused and misguided” Obama Administration policies.
With a laugh, Sen. McCain said he hadn’t heard her and then proceeded to clarify his position. “I said I was encouraged when the President commits to increasing our support for the Free Syrian Army, providing them with the weapons that they need to combat Bashar Assad,” he said, and then added referring to Ingraham, “I just beg to differ, but I’m sure with her vast knowledge of military tactics and strategy she knows better than me.” Sen. McCain then laughed at his joke while hosts Kilmeade and Steve Doocy scrambled for their next question.
Later, after showing a video of a Syrian jet being shot down and the victorious shouts of “Allahu Akbar” from the rebels, Kilmeade said he has a “problem” helping people who shout “that.” Sen. McCain the pointed out that it simply means “God is great,” and equated it to Christians shouting “Thank God.” Sen. McCain went on to say that he believes the President does not need Congressional approval to retaliate.
A frequently quoted report by the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), a former division of the Justice Department, made exaggerated claims about the activity of Mexican drug cartels in the United States, reported the Washington Post on Sunday.
The crime report was released in 2011, and claimed that Mexican cartels were active in more than 1,000 American cities. A number of prominent news outlets cited this figure, as did Senator John McCain in a speech at an Armed Services Committee meeting on security in the Western Hemisphere.
However, government officials and drug law analysts told the Post that the number is exaggerated due to unsound research methods. The report was based largely on self-reporting rather than documented cases.
Said one Justice Department official, "I heard that they just cold-called people in different towns, as many as they could, and said, 'Do you have any Mexicans involved in drugs?' And they would say, 'Yeah, sure,'"
In more than a dozen cities, police officials expressed surprise that their districts were named as having cartel infiltration. The list included remote areas of Montana, Idaho and Arkansas, where cartel activity seems unlikely.
When confronted with the report, Randy Sobel, chief of police in Middleton, N.H. said “That’s news to me.”
According to Peter Reuter, a University of Maryland professor who once co-directed drug research for the Rand think tank, “They say there are Mexicans operating here and they must be part of a Mexican drug organization … These numbers are mythical, and they keep getting reinforced by the echo chamber.”
Despite the report’s inflated claims, there is no denying that Mexican cartels have their hands in drug distribution in the U.S. An estimated 90 percent of illegal heroin, cocaine, speed and marijuana comes from Mexico, reports the Post.
And increasingly, cartels are hiring U.S. military personnel to commit murders, according to Business Insider. A cartel may pay a serviceman triple their normal monthly salary to take out one hit.