John McCain has added a real whopper to the long rap sheet of misleading statements and outright lies he has made during his campaign. The New York Times and Newsweek reported last night that McCain's campaign manager, Rick Davis, has been getting paid $15,000 a month by Freddie Mac until this month when it was taken over by the government. This news contradicts what McCain said in an interview on Sunday with CNBC and The New York Times. Responding to a question about Mr. Davis's role, McCain insisted his campaign manager ended his work with the company in 2005, adding that Davis "had nothing to do with it since, and I'll be glad to have his record examined by anybody who wants to look at it."
The New York Times now reports: "One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain's campaign manager from the end of 2005 through last month, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement. The disclosure contradicts a statement Sunday night by Mr. McCain that the campaign manager, Rick Davis, had no involvement with the company for the last several years. Mr. Davis's firm received the payments from the company, Freddie Mac, until it was taken over by the government this month along with Fannie Mae, the other big mortgage lender whose deteriorating finances helped precipitate the cascading problems on Wall Street..."
David Donnelly, director of the watchdog group Campaign Money Watch, released this statement in response to the story: "John McCain's campaign manager and Freddie Mac essentially had a secret half a million dollar lay-a-way plan. For almost three years, they made secret, monthly payments of $15,000 to Rick Davis for apparently no other work than for him to provide special access to a future McCain White House in exchange. If McCain knew about this, his presidential campaign should be over. If he didn't know about it, he ought to fire Rick Davis immediately."
McCain's campaign has devolved into a mess of lies, deception and manipulation. Whether it's shielding Sarah Palin from the media to hide her lack of knowledge, keeping McCain away from the mike so he doesn't make any more rambling, incoherent statement, or covering up the campaign manager's role in the housing debacle, the wheels came off this "straight talk express" back in the primaries and the bus is now careening out of control.