Campaign Confidential

Praise for McCain in Some Unexpected Places

By Brett Lieberman

A mere hour or so before the National Jewish Democratic Council’s annual Washington conference was set to begin, the Republican Jewish Coalition rolled out it’s latest ad and some interesting quotes.

The RJC recycles quotes from Hillary Rodham Clinton (March 2008), John Kerry (April 2004) and Chuck Schumer (November 2003).

But what’s sure to elicit an interesting responses at the NJDC conference is a quote by NJDC Executive Director Ira Forman.

“I have to take my hat off to [McCain] for putting principle in front of politics… I wish there were more John McCains,” Forman is quoted as saying.

Of course, RJC had to go way back to an Oct. 1, 1999 JTA story to find such a kind comment.

We couldn’t find the story RJC cites. Forman has characterized the GOP ad campaign as a bunch of smears.

RJC responded to a request for additional information noting that “It’s a JTA story.” But a spokesperson has not provided a copy of the story yet.

UPDATE: Forman says he doesn’t remember the quote, which he’s been informed came in the context of praising McCain for urging that Patrick Buchanan be kicked out of the Republican Party for his fringe views.

The important thing, according to Forman, is that “the four people that are quoted there, me, Hillary, Kerry and Schumer, we all agree on one thing – John McCain is not the best person for president. Barack Obama is the best.”

Forman did say that he still wishes there were more John McCains. Of course, it came in the context of his noting that “the [John McCain] who exists today bears no resemblance to the one from 1999.”

Forman also enjoyed the irony of the latest RJC ad highlighting his praise of McCain for criticizing Buchanan. Less than a week ago, RJC released an ad that highlighted Buchanan’s comments as it sought to draw a connection with Obama.


Here are the rest of the quotes:

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