Most of the "scandals" involving McCain heretofore have been weak, almost as weak as oh, Steven Segal's acting. But this one may just pick up some traction in the mainstream media:
McCain, who has made fighting special-interest projects a centerpiece of his presidential campaign, inserted $14.3 million in a 2003 defense bill to buy land around Luke Air Force Base in a provision sought by SunCor Development, the largest of about 50 landowners near the base. SunCor representatives, upset with a state law that restricted development around Luke, met with McCain's staff to lobby for funding, according to John Ogden, SunCor's president at the time.I don't think this is really a big deal, and if it is, it probably has less to do with McCain and more to do with the suits securing the land deals. But what do I care, I'm don't even like McCain.
The Air Force later paid SunCor $3 million for 122 acres near the base. It was the highest single land transaction of the private lots purchased by the government — three times the county's assessed value and twice the military's estimated value. SunCor also donated another 122 acres. Alan Bunnell, a spokesman for SunCor's parent company, Pinnacle West Capital, said the donation was meant to minimize the company's tax bill and enhance the value of adjacent property it owns.
McCain has long-standing ties to SunCor and Pinnacle West:
• McCain's campaigns have received $224,000 since 1998 from donors connected to Pinnacle West, including $104,100 for his current presidential run, according to a USA TODAY analysis of campaign-finance data compiled by the non-partisan CQ MoneyLine.
Will I hold my nose and pull the lever for him? Once I figure out who the lesser evil is, I'll let you know. Until then, I'm supporting John McClane.