Rich Galen

What the article did not point out was that the FCC had been diddling with whatever the issue was for some two years and all the letter did was ask the Commissioners to take a vote so the parties involved in the issue could move on.

The letter, according to the McCain folks, specifically noted that the Senator didn't care which way the vote came out, but urged them to do their jobs and deal with the issue as they saw fit.

Yikes! He did that? Now, that's some front page news.

The Times also dinged McCain for making use of a corporate jet belonging to one of the lobbyist's clients. A client who had also made a donation to one of McCain's campaigns.

News flash. You don't have to go back eight years to find that kind of activity; you only have to go back about five months. Until September of last year it was perfectly legal and within House and Senate rules to borrow a corporate jet and pay what commercial first class air fare would be for anyone travelling with the Congressman or Senator.

The rules now require that the plane be chartered at market rates, so you can see dozens - perhaps hundreds - of Members of Congress and Senators now standing in the TSA lines at Reagan National Airport on Friday afternoons as they have to fly commercial.

If the Times published a list of every Member of the House and Senate who flew on a jet owned by a corporation which had also donated to his or her campaign committee - whole forests would have to be sacrificed to supply enough paper.

The New York Times is a big company and its editors and executives will have to explain why they thought this story, undeveloped and unfair, needed to be in the paper.

My opinion was it was the journalistic equivalent of a blogger sitting in his basement feeding out rumors to the internet over his dial-up connection.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at