McCain did go easy on Ralph Reed and a lot of other well-connected Republicans. Ralph Reed and Grover Norquist were at the very center of the plot to defraud American Indian tribes of tens of millions of dollars. Reed wasn’t just an Abramoff crony, he was co-conspirator.
Ironically, we don’t know the full extent of Reed’s culpability because McCain refuses to release something like 70% of all the documents he amassed in his inquiry. Henry Waxman says that McCain won’t even release some of these documents to the House Oversight Committee.
McCain knows exactly how dirty Reed is, though. He has no business taking money from Reed and calling himself a maverick. Moreover, McCain agreed to attend Ralph Reed’s fundraiser, which is a deeper level of involvement than simply taking his money.
Author: Mark Kleiman
Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out.
Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken)
When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The EconomistAgainst Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993)
Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989)
UCLA HomepageCurriculum Vitae
View all posts by Mark Kleiman