Monday, October 20, 2008

I Know That McCain Trails Obama in Fundraising, But...

Look, I know that the McCain campaign is seriously behind in fundraising and cash on hand. Over the weekend, the Obama campaign reported raising $150,000,000 in September while Time is reporting that Sen. McCain has just $47 million left to spend until election day. So, I understand that Sen. McCain needs to work to raise funds. But that doesn't explain this article from RIA (Novosti - Russian News & Information Agency):
Russia's permanent mission to the UN has received a letter from U.S. Republican presidential candidate John McCain asking for financial support of his election campaign, the mission said in a statement on Monday.

"We have received a letter from Senator John McCain with a request for a financial donation to his presidential election campaign. In this respect we have to reiterate that neither Russia's permanent mission to the UN nor the Russian government or its officials finance political activities in foreign countries," the statement said.

According to Ruslan Bakhtin, press secretary of the Russian mission, the letter dated September 29 and signed by McCain, was addressed to Vitaly Churkin, Russia's envoy to the UN, and arrived on October 16.

The ambassador's title was not included in the letter, and was not clear why the letter had taken over two weeks to arrive.

Enclosed was a request for a donation of up to $5,000 to McCain's election campaign to be returned with a check or permission to withdraw the money from the donor's credit card until October 24.

Individual donations to candidates' election campaigns are capped by law at $2,300, and it is illegal to accept donations from foreign nationals.
I'm sure that this was entirely a series of mistakes. Right? Maybe it is even a fraud. But even still, it just looks ... um ... odd? It will be interesting to see if Sen. McCain takes credit for this mistake or if he claims that it was a fraud.

I can just hear the righteous indignation that would be coming out of the McCain campaign if Sen. Obama sent a similar request to a foreign embassy. The difference is that, if the sender were Sen. Obama, many people would automatically believe that it was intentional just on the basis of Sen. Obama's name and race.


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