Skip to main content

I'm getting a particular kick out of the now-debunked and always-stupid assertion from the McCain camp that Palin was subjected to an FBI background check as part of the vetting process:

Rick Davis, McCain's campaign manager and the person at the point of the vice presidential process, said there was no abrupt change of course in the final hours. Nor, he said, was Palin selected without having gone through the full vetting process that was done for other finalists. That process included reviews of financial and other personal data, an FBI background check and considerable discussion among the handful of McCain advisers involved in the deliberations.

Of course, like so much else about both McCain and Palin, that turned out to be just so much hooey, according to Marc Ambinder of The Atlantic, whose blog post on the subject I reprint here in its entirety, because it so bluntly lays this nonsense bare:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation did not participate in the vetting of Gov. Sarah Palin and did not conduct a background check as part of the process, an FBI spokesman said today.

The Washington Post reported Sunday, citing an interview with campaign manager Rick Davis, that the vetting process "included reviews of financial and other personal data, an FBI background check and considerable discussion among the handful of McCain advisers nvolved in the deliberations.

"In general, we do not do vetting for political campaigns except as it might regard investigations needed for security clearances," said John Miller, the chief FBI spokesperson.

The FBI did not participate in a vet, nor did it run a background check of Gov. Palin as part of the process.

Palin might already have a clearance that relates to her duties as governor. But the FBI can't speak to that, and in any event, those investigations wouldn't be accessible to the McCain campaign anyway.

Yes, that's right. The FBI does not do vetting for political campaigns. Davis and the other military/law enforcement fanboys at the McCain campaign no doubt thought it sounded, like, totally awesome to say there was such a check performed, but there wasn't, and never is.

And why not? Because what interest has the federal government got in doing the work that political parties and campaign organizations are supposed to do for themselves?

None, of course. It'd be the use of official government resources, which are supposed to be non-partisan, for overtly partisan political purposes. In other words, not only a huge violation of the separation between federal resources and private, partisan aims, but yet another blithe assumption by Republicans that the apparatus of state is rightfully theirs to use as they will.

This arrogance and abuse of power is why Bush is the most hated president in history.

This arrogance and abuse of power is why Palin is under investigation by the Alaska State Legislature.

This arrogance and abuse of power is apparently something John McCain and his campaign officials assume ought to be a part of their everyday operations.

And that's because this arrogance and abuse of power lies at the very heart of the Republican theory of governance. They believe the president ought to have this power. Hell, they believe Republicans who are running for president ought to have this power.


Enough already.

This is Cheneyism at its worst and most dangerous. And here it is only just barely into September before the election, and already both McCain and Palin are neck deep in co-opting (or assuming they can and should co-opt) the levers of state power in service of their personal ambitions.


Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Sep 03, 2008 at 09:30 AM PDT.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site