A Contradiction Between McCain's Account And Weavers?
During his presser this a.m., did McCain contradict John Weaver's account of Weaver's meeting with lobbyist Vicki Iseman?
Here's the Times:
Separately, a top McCain aide met with Ms. Iseman at Union Station in Washington to ask her to stay away from the senator. John Weaver, a former top strategist and now an informal campaign adviser, said in an e-mail message that he arranged the meeting after “a discussion among the campaign leadership” about her.
“Our political messaging during that time period centered around taking on the special interests and placing the nation’s interests before either personal or special interest,” Mr. Weaver continued. “Ms. Iseman’s involvement in the campaign, it was felt by us, could undermine that effort.”
Mr. Weaver added that the brief conversation was only about “her conduct and what she allegedly had told people, which made its way back to us.” He declined to elaborate.
McCain simply said he was not "aware" of Weaver's having met with Iseman -- "I don’t know anything about it", not that McCain knew for a fact that it did not happen.
This is plausible.
Still, the fact that Weaver met with Iseman at all in the midst of a busy campaign season suggests that very senior McCain aides did indeed worry about the appearance of her relationship with McCain.
After all, they were working for a guy who was supposed to pay attention to the appearance of a conflict of interest. In his autobiography, Worth the Fighting, McCain wrote of his Keating 5 days:
Learning from my unhappy experience, I have refrained from ever intervening in the regulatory decisions of the federal government if such intervention could be construed, rightly or wrongly, as done solely or primarily for the benefit of a major financial supporter of my campaign.