Friday, March 24, 2006

John McCain should pay more attention to Big Mitch’s blog.

On Sunday, December 18, 2005, I asked the question “Do Republican’s want fair elections?” and suggested that “You be the judge.”

The evidence I offered was a little tidbit from the Dec. 16th New York Times, which was buried six paragraphs deep in the National Roundup column where they publish odds and ends from around the country. The Grey Lady told us that a former top Republican Party official was convicted of telephone harassment in a plot to jam the Democrats' phones on Election Day in 2002. The criminal in question was James Tobin of Bangor Maine.

Tobin’s supervisor in the Republican National Committee was a fellow named Terry Nelson. We can assume that he knew something about the anti-democratic plot because he was on the Government’s witness list, as you can see here.

You may have heard of Terry Nelson before, especially if you read the Tom DeLay indictment which, in Count I charges DeLay with the crime of Conspiracy. Now when you charge conspiracy in Federal Court, you usually have to specify at least one overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy. The usual practice is to charge several. For example, in DeLay’s indictment the sixth overt act alleged is as follows:
on or about the thirteenth day of September, 2002, in Washington, D.C., the defendant, James Walter Ellis, did tender and deliver the aforesaid check, and did cause the aforesaid check to be tendered and delivered, to Terry Nelson and the Republican national Committee.
All of this is just background to help you understand this delicious phone call that was taken on-air by straight talking John “Please don’t vote for me, George Bush needs the votes more than I do” McCain:
CALLER: Thanks, I had a question for the senator. For a reformer, I'm kind of curious why he would hire a guy like Terry Nelson as a senior advisor. Here's a guy who was actually in the indictment of DeLay on his money laundering charges. When he was at the RNC, he agreed to take the corporate contributions from DeLay's PAC and then recycle them back into the Republican congressional races.

And he was also, this guy Nelson was also the supervisor of James Tobin, who was the guy convicted last year for helping jam the Democratic get-out-the-vote lines in New England a couple years ago.

So I'm curious why would you hire someone with such a shady background?

MCCAIN: None of those charges are true.

CALLER: You don't believe what was actually written in the indictment from Texas?


CARLSON: All right.

[nervous laughter]

MCCAIN: I will check it out. But I've never heard of such a thing. I know that he was a grassroots organizer for President Bush year 2000 and 2004, and had a very important job in the Bush campaign as late as 2004, but the other charges I will go and look and see if any of them are true, but I've never heard of them before.
“… and tell ’em Big Mitch sent ya!”

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