Mitch McConnell, Hans Von Spakovsky, Mitt’s Re-Emergence, and McCain’s FEC Money Woes

The LAT reports that Mitt’s thinking of un-suspending his campaign.

Josh Romney, one of former Gov. Mitt Romney’s five sons, says it’s "possible" his father may rejoin the race for the White House, either as a vice presidential candidate or seek to become the Republican Party’s standard bearer if the campaign of Sen. John McCain falters.

The 60-year-old Romney, who "suspended" his campaign for the GOP nomination after a disappointing showing on Super Tuesday and a week later endorsed McCain, was taking a break from politics this weekend on a skiing vacation in Utah with his wife Ann, according to his 32-year-old son.

The elder Romney, who was unable to assemble sufficient conservative support to thwart McCain, has made no public comment since the McCain camp was rocked…

by a controversial article in the New York Times last week first revealed in December in a posting on the Drudge Report.


Because he suspended rather than terminated his campaign, Romney still retains control of the nearly 300 delegates he’s already won. Another former governor, Mike Huckabee, remains in the race and is nearing Romney’s delegate totals, though few give him a realistic chance of catching McCain with more than 900 delegates.

Now, I doubt Mitt would be considering un-suspending his campaign without talking to the GOP bigwigs first. So this trial balloon suggests that GOP bigwigs may well be worried about McCain’s two pressing problems: the Straight Talk for Lobbyists Express seems to be getting traction in the news, and the FEC says McCain is officially taking matching funds, which means he has reached the limit he can spend between now and the GOP Convention in September.

Personally, I think they’re probably more worried about the FEC problem. They probably just can’t understand that having a presidency run by lobbyists might be a problem for the average voter. And if McCain can’t spend between now and September, he will lose.

But here’s the curious bit. At least according to the FEC, they will consider McCain to be receiving matching funds (and therefore to be forced to stop spending) until such a time as they have a quorum so they can consider his request to withdraw from matching funds.

So the McCain campaign sent the Federal Election Commission a letter (pdf) earlier this month saying that he was opting out. But there’s a problem. And FEC Chairman David Mason, a Republican, made it plain in his letter (pdf) yesterday: McCain can’t tell the FEC that he’s out of the system. He can only ask.

And the FEC, which normally has six commissioners, can’t give him an answer until it has a quorum of four commissioners. It currently only has two. That’s because the Senate has been deadlocked over four nominees; Democrats insist on a separate confirmation vote for vote-suppression guru Hans von Spakovsky, and Republicans insist on a single vote for all nominees.

This puts the Dems in a strong position–by denying the FEC a quorum, they can deny McCain the ability to get out of matching funds. They don’t have to do anything except continue to refuse to consider all four nominated commissioners a hearing together; so long as they continue to insist that von Spakovsky receive his own hearing, things won’t move forward.

Unless Mitch McConnell budges on his insistence that all the commissioners receive a hearing together.

But here ‘s the thing. Mitch McConnell (whom I’d include among those GOP bigwigs whose support Mitt would get before threatening to un-suspend his campaign) hates John McCain. Absolutely hates him.

In fact, I’d say that McConnell is one of the most likely sources for the Iseman story in the first place. After all, the first piece of evidence to counter McCain’s denials was McCain’s deposition in McConnell’s suit against the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law (BCRA is one of the reasons McConnell hates McCain so much). The deposition was given to McConnell’s attorney in that suit, Floyd Abrams. While the deposition is publicly available, it is likely that someone pointed Isikoff to it. If so, I’m guessing that someone is rather closer to McConnell than he is to McCain.

In other words, the Iseman smear may have been intended to break (with the nudging of Drudge) back in December, so McCain would lose the nomination to the party bigwigs’ presumptive favorite, Mitt Romney. The same guy threatening to get back in.

Suffice it to say I look forward to seeing whether McConnell helps McCain out of his little FEC problem by withdrawing his demands concerning von Spakovsky. Or whether he forces McCain to choose between breaking the law he passed–or dropping his bid for the Presidency.

65 replies
  1. ProfessorFoland says:

    From Richard Reeves, presidential historian:

    I guess I’m on my own. But that’s the way it often is with politicians, government and history. There is an “us” and “them” quality to the game and I am greatly influenced by what I call Kelly’s Law. I learned it in 1984 on a road in Honduras near Palmerola, the principal American base in the covert war against the Sandinista government of Nicaragua. I ran into a roadblock and stepped out the car, standing next to American truckdriver, who had also been stopped. “Sgt. Kelly” was the name on his uniform tag. His truck was carrying a huge load of telephone poles. Four old C-47s swept over the range of hills in front of us, coming toward us. Paratroopers began jumping out of the planes.

    “What’s that?” I said.

    “What’s what?” Sgt. Kelly answered.

    “The paratroopers.”

    “What paratroopers?” he said.

    It may not matter very much whether the FEC ever gives McCain the green light. I suspect the above is a pretty good gloss of what the response of the McCain campaign will be, if they ever get accused of breaking the law.

    • Bushie says:

      I concur with your thoughts. Would a powerless or deadlocked FEC, stacked with die-hard GOP ideologs, impose any fines or pass along recommendations for criminal investigation to this DoJ. And if by chance McCain is selected as the next Prez. no repercussions at all.

      • emptywheel says:

        But if he’s not, and Dems get another 4-8 seats in the Senate, then McCain may very well face jail time.

        A pretty big risk for a 71 year old who likes to have sweet blond things at ready availability.

        • emptywheel says:

          And actually, all it’d take is a nice law and order AG in place to bring charges against McCain. The Fieger prosecution is definite precedent that there’s no need to consult with FEC on criminal charges.

          • scribe says:

            The Fieger prosecution – and the Siegelman prosecution.

            Two more examples of the Rethugs being too aggressive for their own good in pursuing their policy/personal* goals and winding up biting themselves in the ass.

            * You can’t tell me getting Fieger wasn’t personal – for Bush (viz., that ad Fieger ran of Bush’s attacks on him) and for the people at DoJ (currying favor, much?). And, likewise for Siegelman.

        • freepatriot says:

          FOUL ON THE PLAY

          A pretty big risk for a 71 year old who likes to have sweet blond things at ready availability

          That’s an awful BIG invitation for a prison rape joke …

          jus sayin, is all …

          • emptywheel says:

            I don’t see it. The point was that McCain seems to thrive on having young blond females readily available–and that would not be possible in prison.

            What am I missing?

            • freepatriot says:

              there is no exclusivity in haircolor amongst the genders, an you didn’t specify “female”

              I could tell you stories …

              but you don’t wanna know bout stuff like that

  2. Neil says:

    My McCain Style, Self-Administered Q&A

    Is McConnell’s vendetta so personal he would kill the Republicans’ chances in order to destroy McCain?


    By what series of events is McCain’s demise ensured?

    We may have seen it but McCain controls the decision and we already know he can withstand this kind of torture.

    By what series of events is Romney’s/Huckabee candadacy put forth?

    Time is of the essence.

    What backlash can McConnell expect for a decision to not withdraw his demands concerning von Spakovsky? In other words, what risk does he run for trashing McCain’s campaign finances and therfore McCain’s chances of being elected?

    If this is death match 2000 between the warring Republicans, neither will withdrawal. And McConnell needs McCain to withdrawal with a replacement all lined up.

  3. scribe says:

    One is compelled to wonder – a lot.

    If we think back to the whole “lumping the 4 FEC nominees together” issue, when they came to Judiciary back in November or December, IIRC it was McConnell, primarily, who was pushing to have them considered as a group rather than individually. He was citing a precedent which later turned out to be bogus. Then, it was DiFi crossing over and agreeing to putting all the nominees together – in so many words – going along with McConnell’s bogus precedent argument.

    IIRC, that came about the same time as DiFi caved on warrantless wiretapping and retro immunity, and shortly after Georgie gave her a ride to see the So.Cal. forest/brush fires in his Air Force One aeroplane, allowing him several hours while enroute to work his manly charm on those issues, I suppose.

    So, a couple questions:
    Was DiFi lucky, or smart?
    Ditto, Leahy and the rest of Judiciary?
    Was Bush’s insistence on trying to game the election with Von Spakovssky (or however you spell it) on the FEC yet another example of the Rethugs being too aggressive (in pushing their own priorities/programs) for their own good?
    Was McConnell’s agentry for Bush on the FEC nominations driven by his lackeyhood, his distaste for election regulation in general, or something else?
    Did the possibility that St. John McBush would return from the dead ever cross their mind?

    and, finally,
    Was the progressive blogosphere (which excoriated DiFi, Von Spak, McConnell and most everyone involved in the FEC nominations) short-sighted? Or was the blogosphere’s insistence on following the rules, such as they are/were, sensible?

    Seems to me we need to play chess a little better.


    • emptywheel says:

      Interesting question–I hadn’t thought back to how the four-or-nothing stance got planted. My sense is, then, that it was holding the line on Rove’s plans to steal the election–that they really did want von Spakovsky and thought, if nothing else, they’d recess him; this was before Reid got serious about pro formas, too.

      In other words, if my gut that McConnell really doesn’t want someone I imagine he blieves to be a sanctimonious prick in charge of HIS, McConnell’s, party is correct, I still think the original Spakovsky stance was done at Bush’s behest.

      The question now is whether Bush can call off the McConnell dogs.

  4. freepatriot says:

    guess we ain’t gonna hear about how Obama violated his pledge anymore

    (see bmaz, I unnerstan the game better than I let on)

    better check the NYSE

    my popcorn stock oughta be going thru the roof

    I left a FISA question in EPU land on the last thread, and I need an answer so I can laugh at a congresscritter’s staffer, if anybody is interested in helping me laugh my ass off

  5. merkwurdiglieber says:

    Some times luck does come into play, even with the invincible machine
    of a tyranny… if , as seems highly plausible, McConnell played this
    card to shaft his old nemesis before the primary season. I think you have it about right, the usually dependable leak method had a slow fuse
    and detonated too late in the process, after McCain became the presumptive
    nominee… ” bad for glass”, h/t Chinatown.

  6. merkwurdiglieber says:

    With McConnell looking at defeat in the fall, and Bush retirement, what
    traction would either have upon the other than to compromise by dumping
    McCain and giving the base their Romney/Huck ticket? Is there a way out
    for them other than having to win to forestall a prosecution by a dem

  7. JohnLopresti says:

    Weak McCain-Feingold act, and weak FEC; those are easy concepts to accept for McCain, Bushco, the Republican party, and McConnell. I would expect DiFi to be fretting thru this, given her committee’s oversight responsibilities; but Leahy simply bearing his beguiling smile, wondering how much wider the ballot margin is going to be if the Republicans continue to fail to negotiate their own party’s internal pecking order in time to save an approaching diaster in the fall elections. Campaign LegalCenter, the libertarian outfit that likes to decry the flaccidity of FEC even when fully quorum sated, kindly provides a transcript of the supreme court presentations in McConnell v FEC 2003.

  8. JTMinIA says:

    EW –

    I was very upset with NPR for referring to the NYT story as a “smear” (and then missing the whole point). I don’t see it as a smear at all. But now here are you using the same word, which makes me rethink, since I like your take on things in general.

    Could you tell me what your definition of “smear” is?

    • freepatriot says:

      I don’t speak for ew, but I get the idea that the NY Times piece should have stuck to the “LOBBYIST” angle, and left out the “ROMANCE” angle

      it almost looks as if the NY Times tried to torpedo their own story

      but I could be using old tinfoil …

      • Phoenix Woman says:

        If that was their goal, it didn’t work: Not among the print media, at least.

        By the way: It’s been mentioned before, but why has Cindy McCain, whose generosity with her money is what got McCain into Congress and then the Senate in the first place, suddenly cut off Johnny’s access to her, um, vaults? Teresa Kerry had no problem with loaning her hubby’s campaign a few million in the 2004 season; why was McCain forced to go take out that stinky bank loan?

        • scribe says:

          Maybe Cindy is one of those flinty-nosed Repugs who iron their own shirts and cut their own hair rather than spend a couple bucks on either. They’re the kind of folks you love running your local bank, because you know your money will be there when you come to take it out.

          Acting as a piggy bank for relatives’ ambitions (or debt-covering), um, not so much.

          Or, maybe her money’s tied up in trusts. Repugs are known to do that.

          Or, maybe the sexual innuendo about that lobbyist (or some other blonde) is true (or she believes it to be) and she’s not going to drop one penny of her money. You can bet there’s a prenup, BTW – Arizona’s a community property state, last I checked.

          • Phoenix Woman says:

            Scribe: That would make sense if Cindy had always been like that. But she’s not. In fact, McCain’s political career didn’t exist before Cindy and her money came along.

            • scribe says:

              Just because McBush’s political career started only once Cindy’s money came along does not mean that the money flow continued throughout the career.

              I could easily see a P.O.’d Cindy cutting off the gelt about 2000, once the then-thirtyish lookalike lobbyist started showing up.

          • bmaz says:

            More likely that is dad’s influence on Cindy. And I don’t know that the vaults have been turned off so much as they are hinky about exposing the family money to liabilities and exposure to illegal contribution allegations etc.; Hensley & Co. is big big bucks here. My guess is the Hensleys are just being cautious. On the other front, the quiet word has long been that Cindy knew about St. John’s proclivities for young blonde things and that there was some kind of understanding. I don’t know if that is true or not, but this is not the first rumor of a St. John raping er robbing the blonde cradle story.

        • PJEvans says:

          I was thinking maybe she thinks of him as her trophy husband: ‘Look, ma, I caught a senator!’

          (Possibly the gilding is wearing off that particular lily these days.)

    • emptywheel says:

      Fair point.

      I used it because I’m thinking of 1) the fact that McCain saw it as akin to what he got in SC last time, and 2) from the perspective of McConnell. McConnell likely doesn’t give a hoot for McCain’s reputed infidelities or his schmoozing with a lobbyist gal. What he hates is McCain’s (from McConnell’s perspective) hypocritical sanctimoniousness. So again from McConnell’s perspective, it’s a smear bc it has hte desired effect, not because McConnell is any better.

      • JTMinIA says:

        Thanks for the reply. I guess we do use “smear” differently and maybe I’m too uptight. As background, one of the things that I used to study (as a psychologist; my day job) is conceptual analysis of words … what is often called a “halo effect.” The word “smear” is highly negative and implies bad things about the person making the statement. It’s more than just the desired effect, as you suggested; it’s also the method. A “smear” is, by consensus if not definition, dishonest. You either lie or imply things that are not true when you smear someone.

        Because I didn’t see any dishonesty in the NYT piece, I didn’t read it as a smear. And I reacted very strongly when NPR called is a smear, because, as soon as you do this, you effectively are telling the listener to ignore the story, since it is dishonest.

  9. Neil says:

    DNC to File FEC Complaint Against McCain

    Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean told reporters today that the DNC will file a complaint with the Federal Election Commission Monday over Sen. John McCain’s recent letter to the FEC informing them that he is withdrawing from the public financing system for his presidential campaign.

    “We are in this complaint to the FEC asserting that the senator and his campaign are still bound to the conditions by matching funds including the spending limits of approximately $56 million dollars,” Dean said. MORE

    • Phoenix Woman says:

      D-Von has got the table!

      Translation: Howard Dean’s going to make sure that this little issue stays in the public eye. This makes it a lot harder for McCain to just simply unilaterally flip off the FEC.

      • scribe says:

        If I were the DNC, I would be having my lawyers looking into whether (and to what extent) they (or their candidates) could get some flavor of injunctive relief against the McCain campaign to keep them from going over the fed funds limit.

        They might not win, but they’d surely make for a headache – particularly since McCain would have to pay his own lawyers to defend the case, making his financial woes even worse.

        • freepatriot says:

          They might not win, but they’d surely make for a headache – particularly since McCain would have to pay his own lawyers to defend the case, making his financial woes even worse.

          ohhh, I like the way you think …

          everybody should be talking about this

          mccain is a fucking hypocrite

          the straight lobbyist corkscrew express

          and it’s still February folks

          the mittster is back circling mccain like a buzzard

          and the huckaberry is acting like this is a gift from god

          if hillary bows out gracefully after March 4th, and the repuglitards go into full-on cannibal mode, all those stories about the Democrats’ disaray are gonna be egg on some reporters’ faces

          so everybody go out and buy more popcorn (my stock ain’t doing as good as I thought)

          • scribe says:

            Probably the best way to approach it would be to have local party committees in Dem-leaning areas (Philly, perhaps?) where judges are reliably Democratic (Philly, perhaps?) sue to prohibit him from campaigning in their area, on the basis that his spending money to do so would violate the law.

            That might keep it out of federal court, although it could be removed to federal court if the sole (or a good piece of the) basis of the suit were the federal statute. Better to find a state law issue in the various states’ election laws, so as to keep it out of federal court, where one decision could be national precedent. Go after him district by district in state court, if possible. Every district, a new suit, and if played right, none a precedent for the other (save precedent in favor of the Dems when they win).

            • freepatriot says:

              so what you’re saying is that “We The People” of the United States of America can petition our local courts to prevent mccain from campaigning in our own localities (counties and parishes) ???

              gonna run into first amendment and prior restraint laws on that, ain’t we ???

              claiming political speech is a criminal act ???

              that ain’t a winning stratagy in my book

              but I could be wrong

              besides, we’re in the realm of politics here

              Obama can BEAT THE SHIT out of mccain on this issue

              let’s not do mccain any favors here

        • ProfessorFoland says:

          Speaking of burning up billable hours, I’m surprised nobody has decided to make McCain defend his eligibility to be president, seeing as he was born in Panama.

          The case would seem destined to be lost (i.e. for McCain’s eligibility to be upheld), but maybe some low-information big donors might get a little scared by it?

          • scribe says:

            His dad was Navy officer, later one of the admirals in charge of the fast carrier task forces which the Navy deployed in the Pacific in WWII. And, at the time, Panama was the Canal Zone, about as American as Iowa.

            It’s a non-starter.

            • Minnesotachuck says:

              The Admiral John McCain of World War II fame was the Senator’s grandfather, and he died suddenly within months of the end of the war. The Senator’s father was the four star admiral who was CINCPAC during much of his son’s period in captivity.

              • scribe says:

                You are correct – but it doesn’t change the fact that the Canal Zone was as American as Iowa.

                Young’ns might have forgotten, but there once was even a United States District Court for the District of the Canal Zone. Article III federal court. Went out of business about 1980, when the CZ Treaty required it. That’s how integrated it was into the US.

                • Minnesotachuck says:

                  I wasn’t disagreeing with your main thrust, namely that McCain’s ‘born-in-the-USA’ status might be worth litigating just for the nuisance value. I just thought it was worth setting the record straight on an historical issue even though it was tangential to your main point.

                  Considering we’ve allegedly been governed by our Constitution for over 220 years now the issue has probably been litigated along the way regarding naturally-born citizenship status, considering how many people must have been born to military, diplomatic and other officials abroad. However I can’t think of any situation off hand where it might have been an issue regarding the Constitutional requirements for the Presidency and Veephood. Although IANAL, I find it hard to believe that he would not be regarded as a born citizen under his circumstances, but as you suggest the nuisance value of litigating it is worth considering.

              • ProfessorFoland says:

                As I said, the case is destined to be lost, in that “natural born citizen” would likely be held to include those whose parents are both American. But it’s not an undebatable proposition–in fact, the State Department says (p. 6): “Despite widespread popular belief, U.S. military installations abroad and U.S. diplomatic or consular facilities are not part of the United States within the meaning of the 14th Amendment. A child born on the premises of such a facility is not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and does not acquire U.S. citizenship by reason of birth.”

                I’m pretty sure the question wrt presidential eligibility has never been formally settled–though Wikipedia has a list of cases that bear on the question.

                    • scribe says:

                      OK – I’m looking at the fact of the existence of the Article III US District Court in the Canal Zone as meaning it was something more than just an overseas military installation. The contrary example would be the US bases in Germany, which were clearly outside the US.

                      We’d have to look at all the treaties between the US and Panama relative to the Canal Zone to find out for sure.

                      And, no, I do not think the matter has been litigated relative to a presidential contest, ever. My suspicion is that candidates whose compliance with the provision would be viewed as dubious get weeded out well in advance of a nomination. It might have happened for a minor party candidate of whom we are unaware.

                      But, as to litigation issues – remember, there was a guy who tried to sue to have Cheney disentitled to be VP about the time of the 2000 anointing. He was suing under the provision of the Constitution which prohibits the President and VP from being from the same state, saying Cheney (who’d been a Texas citizen/domiciliary when heading Halliburton) was really still a Texas citizen and his change to Wyoming citizenship was a sham. That guy’s case was dismissed for lack of standing by the federal courts in Texas and that dismissal was affirmed on appeal.

                      So, even if the issue is that McBush is not a native-born US citizen has merit on the citizenship issue, it is not clear to me that anyone (other than, maybe, a losing opponent) would have standing to sue. Even the loser’s standing would be, to my eyes, a dubious proposition given the Republican compositions of federal courts.

                      Moreover, and I think I’ve made this clear elsewhere – the Dems do not want a McCain who is forced to leave the race. Rather, they want a McCain whose candidacy is crippled, but who is still in the race and stays there because he has the most delegates, gets the nomination and gets creamed in the General. Not for nothing did Mittens pop back up again today – he’s the McCain replacement in waiting.

                    • formerGeorgian says:

                      And, no, I do not think the matter has been litigated relative to a presidential contest, ever. My suspicion is that candidates whose compliance with the provision would be viewed as dubious get weeded out well in advance of a nomination.

                      Gov. George W. Romney, 1968 candidate, was born in Mexico.

            • rwgate says:

              Actually, McCain’s grandfather was an Admiral in WWII. His father, a decorated WWII submarine commander, was an Admiral in the Pacific during Vietnam.

  10. Leen says:

    The Republicans must be really worried watching McCain take these hits

    The 800lb gorilla in the debates the Israeli Palestinian conflict
    The issue that dare not speak its name. Come on Russert ask a serious question about this critical issue

    Human Chain in the Gaza..(this may make it into the MSM or onto so called progressive blogs

  11. marksb says:

    I’d back bmaz on this. $5M is a difficult thing to just come up with. While Ms. McCain is chair of Hensley & Company, one of the largest A-B distributors, that doesn’t mean she has free access to the family funds, which might be tied up in trust. Parents often look at their children’s history with things like, oh, drug issues and theft from an organization, and set up a trust to limit access to the vaults…

    • emptywheel says:

      There’s also the optics of running a presidential campaign off the profits of beer sales. Liberals probably wouldn’t mind, but the Baptist South and Mormon Mountain West might–at least until the Prophet had a vision saying that Coke Beer was okay to drink now.

  12. bmaz says:

    The lawyer question is interesting. If things get dicey, I don’t think he sticks with Bennett, I think that was strictly for the NYT benefit. However, the one he would go to, John Dowd, may have a conflict because of the work he did on Cindy’s narcotic theft/use case; I guess any such conflict, if it is really there, could arguably be waived, but it might be messy. I don’t think the Hensley family wants all the prior stuff on Cindy put back in the public light; there may be some internal pressure on McCain to get out of all this for Cindy’s sake. But he is stubborn. I’ll say this, if the Hensley family turns on him, he is toast. I also meant what I said a few days ago when this first broke; Charlie Keating, although old and frail, is still quietly around and harbors serious grudges against McCain. I would not be surprised in the least if he were to take some serious parting shots at McCain. And he has some serious ammo…..

  13. freepatriot says:

    so let me get this straight:

    mccain’s money comes from DEMON ALCOHOL ???

    and his wife had a problem with “stealing-using” narcotics ???

    since mccain voted to remove bill clinton from office due to a consentual sexual affair, I’d say these topics are FAIR GAME

  14. Phoenix Woman says:

    Romney’s hand may have been forced here: Mitt’s kid made the announcement bare hours after Huckabee loudly suggested to a crowd of Dobsonites that he’s entitled to Mitten’s delegates.

    I’m betting that Romney probably wanted to wait a little while longer so as not to look like a ghoul picking at McCain’s wounded carcass, but Huckabee’s feint apparently frightened him into essentially begging his delegates to stay put.…..egates.htm

  15. ProfessorFoland says:

    Not quite true that the Panama Canal Zone was as American as Iowa, because it was never incorporated.

    Again, from the State Department:

    FAM 1116.1-1 States and Incorporated Territories
    (TL:CON-64; 11-30-95)
    a. The phrase “in the United States” as used in the 14th Amendment clearly includes States that have been admitted to the Union. Sections 304 and 305 of the INA provide a basis for citizenship of persons born in Alaska and Hawaii while they were territories of the United States. These sections reflect, to a large extent, prior statutes and judicial decisions which addressed the l4th Amendment citizenship implications of birth in these and other U.S. territories. Guidance on evidence on such births should be sought from CA/OCS.
    b. Sec. 101(a)(38) INA provides that, for the purposes of the INA, The term “United States”,… when used in the geographical sense, means the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands of the United States.In addition, under Pub. L. 94-241, the “approving Covenant to Establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political Union with the United States of America”, (Sec. 506(c)), which took effect on November 3, 1986, the Northern Mariana Islands are treated as part of the United States for the purposes of sections 301 and 308 of the INA.
    c. All of the aforenamed areas, except Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands, came within the definition of “United States” given in the Nationality Act of 1940, which was effective from January 13, 1941 through December 23, 1952.
    d. Prior to January 13, 1941, there was no statutory definition of “the United States” for citizenship purposes. Thus there were varying interpretations. Guidance should be sought from the Department (CA/OCS) when such issues arise.

  16. Sara says:

    I think you could litigate it in several state courts. After all, the question of who is on the ballot is a state issue, governed by the laws of states, their courts, and the Secretary of State. In this sense, a State Supreme Court could be asked, for the purposes of a ballot in their state, whether McCain meets the “natural born citizen” qualification. Now doing that in several states on the Republican Electorial Map could be interesting.

    • freepatriot says:

      leave mccain alone

      he’s out SPLAININ THAT 100 YEARS comment right now

      turns out that mccain was for 100 years of war before he was against it

      besides, the war will be over soon anyway

      who ya gonna believe, a KNOWN LIAR, or your lying eyes

      this guy is comic gold

      he’s so repuglitarded that he can’t remember what he said yesterday

      first he gets angry and says something stupid

      then he’s confronted with his own words and he gets a “Stunned Stoooopid” look

      against mccain, we could win if Jimmy Traficant was our nominee

  17. PaminBB says:

    I’m not sure why McCain has put himself in this position with the FEC. I’m sure his wealthy friends would set up a couple of handy 527s to fling mud at the Dems. The pundits onFaux news and the Noise Machine will find pretexts to invite him on and willcampaign for him. He must have been counting on the FEC being stacked.

    • freepatriot says:

      He must have been counting on the FEC being stacked

      that’s the problem with DIABOLICAL PLANS

      they don’t always work

      guess mccain never watched Mcguyver

    • freepatriot says:

      how do you copyright a sound bit ???

      I got dibs on this one:

      Is it supposed to burst into flames like that ???

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