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Sunday, April 20, 2008
A Little Background

The Washington Post runs an article on the legendary John McCain temper. They admit that (with the exception of the ridiculous Bumiller exchange) that it has not surfaced during this election. But get this bit:

During the early 1990s, McCain telephoned the office of Tom Freestone, a governmental official little known outside Arizona's Maricopa County. McCain had an unusual request. He wanted Freestone, then chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, to reject a job applicant named Karen S. Johnson, whose last governmental position had been in the office of a former Arizona governor and who had just interviewed for a position as an aide in Freestone's office.

According to two employees in the office, McCain told Freestone that the applicant's past political associations left her carrying unflattering baggage.

The pair of Freestone staffers thought it odd that a U.S. senator would even know that Johnson had applied for a job in their office, let alone that he had taken time out of his workday to pick up a phone and weigh in on a staffing matter so removed from the locus of Washington power. But McCain's disenchantment with Johnson was personal: A few years earlier, he had an angry exchange with her while she was the secretary for Republican Arizona Gov. Evan Meacham, who was impeached and forced out of office for campaign finance violations.

Around the time of Meacham's ouster, Johnson said, McCain paid a visit to him. Johnson recalled that McCain swiftly used the opportunity to lecture Meacham: "You should never have been elected. You're an embarrassment to the [Republican] Party."

A stupefied Meacham just stared at the senator. An indignant Johnson, as she tells the story, snapped at McCain: "How dare you? You're the embarrassment to the party."

As Johnson and another person working in Freestone's office remember, the surprised supervisor told Johnson about McCain's objections to her. "But I'm hiring you anyway," Freestone told her.

For Johnson, McCain's call raised questions as to whether he bore a lasting animosity against anyone who ever challenged him. "Everyone in [Freestone's] office thought it was all ridiculous . . . and petty," remembers Johnson, a devout Republican conservative who today is an Arizona state senator.

Hoo-boy. Karen S. Johnson is indeed a buffoon, and her boss was an embarrassment to the Republican Party, so much so that the Republicans themselves impeached the dolt. Let's talk a bit about Karen S. Johnson. She chaired Pat Buchanan's 1996 run in Arizona. She's a North American Union fruitcake:

She was named worst legislator of the year in 2002 by the Arizona Republic:

Karen Johnson was named worst legislator of the year in 2002 by the Arizona Republic for abusing her authority as House Rules Chair to hold up bills. Karen is a big believer in marriage, she's been married five times so far. She has also sponsored legislation that would make it harder to get divorced.

Not surprisingly, she was a Ron Paul supporter this time around:

“Ron Paul has been my hero for decades. I applaud his integrity as well as dedication to the principles of our sacred Constitution. Congressman Paul’s matchless service to our country and unparalleled devotion to the ideals of freedom and liberty, which this country used to represent, is noble beyond words.”

So yes, she's got a little baggage that might be considered a tad unflattering.
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