The Two Faces Of John McCain (Timber Version)

By Sean Reagan

In my ongoing fascination with reading the speeches of John McCain, I noticed this lately reoccurring nugget:

The timber industry made off with 260 million dollars in tax breaks.

Here at The Back Forty, I’ve pointed out many times that the Farm Bill ain’t perfect. If it was a movie, we’d call it “The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly.” But I’m with Obama on this one: you can’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

So my problem isn’t so much that McCain wants to gripe about subsidies and tax cuts.

It’s the utter hypocrisy with which he does it.

Any time you see John McCain take a stand – like, say, on Big Tobacco – I can almost guarantee you that at some point in his long political career, he’s taken the exact opposite stance.

In the 1980’s, the forest products industry was happy to float thousands of dollars to McCain. He picked up $8,400 from Timber industry PACS in 1994 alone.

From 1985 to 1990, Phoenix-based Kaibab Industries gave him $2,800. At that time they were under investigation for allegedly overcutting trees in the northern portion of the Kaibab National Forest near the Grand Canyon.

And of course McCain, being the stand-up noble guy that he is, never took monies from them after that, right?


The other day I happened to read Juliet Eilperin’s piece in the Washington Post – the one about McCain’s “balancing act” when it comes to environmental issues. Eilperin wrote:

McCain had been on both sides of the Arctic Drilling issues over the course of his career . . .

When I was done laughing I thought, You know what? We need a new macro for journalists. Hit one key and it automatically inserts the following text into your story: “John McCain has been on both sides of – insert issue here – over the course of his career.”

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7 Responses to “The Two Faces Of John McCain (Timber Version)”

  1. Great Blog post. I am going to bookmark and read more often. I love the Blog template

  2. I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

  3. Where did you get your blog layout from? I’d like to get one like it for my blog.

  4. Great post. The Back Forty is providing an outstanding analysis of the issues Democrats can use against McCain. 

  5. Sean,

    Great post.  You are an easy source for quick issue hit diaries since you cover issues so well.

  6. @Jamie Holts — contact me at with any template questions you have.

    @Student Guy — glad you like Sean’s work, Matt and I do too.   Recommend The Back Forty to friends and help us grow!

  7. To Deb,

    I plug his work a lot on myDD.

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