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Is McCain bad for business?

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by ConcordCowboy, Feb 14, 2008.

  1. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Is McCain bad for business?

    The Republican front-runner has a long history of sparring with industry and taking on companies he thinks are getting sweetheart deals or hurting consumers.

    How will corporate America react if John McCain lands the Republican nomination?

    For business, the senator from Arizona is a candidate of contradictions. He initially opposed President Bush's tax cuts, but now supports making them permanent. He has crusaded against the influence of corporate lobbyists, yet has more K Street fixers raising money for his campaign than any other presidential candidate. And he says he's a full-bore, free-enterprise capitalist even as he admits that he hasn't understood economics as well as he should have.

    "He doesn't fit neatly into a box," says GOP pollster Whit Ayres, who is unaffiliated with a presidential candidate.

    McCain posted strong progress Feb. 5 in his quest for the nomination, winning a string of key states including Arizona, California, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Illinois. If corporate leaders do fall in line behind McCain's candidacy after his Super Tuesday success it will be somewhat grudgingly.

    Romney was top choice

    In 2007, business tilted its support heavily toward former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Romney is certainly a more natural cultural fit for business: As a founder of the investment firm Bain Capital, he's had a successful career in the private sector, which he speaks of repeatedly on the campaign trail, telling audiences he has the economy in his DNA.

    In contrast to Romney, McCain has joked that he's reading Alan Greenspan's book to learn about the economy.

    And he has a long history of tangling with a broad range of industries and even individual companies when he thinks they're getting a sweetheart deal in Washington or hurting American consumers. That record could give business representatives pause.

    "McCain will cause a few corporate government relations offices to sit up straight now that he is all but the GOP nominee," says Republican lobbyist and McCain supporter Scott Reed.

    Some business executives worry that McCain's votes against Bush's 2001 and 2003 tax cuts -- which he said were irresponsible since they weren't offset by spending cuts -- signal that he is something other than an anti-tax hawk. But on the campaign trail he now argues that allowing them to expire would amount to an unacceptable tax hike.

    During a Jan. 27 appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," the Republican presidential candidate discusses his votes on the Bush tax cuts and other issues dear to conservatives. In 2004 and 2005, McCain famously led the Senate's investigation into the wrongdoing of GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff, to the embarrassment of some of his colleagues who had dealings with the now-jailed influence peddler. At the time he denounced the tight relationships between some lobbyists and members of Congress. But the watchdog group Public Citizen reported that McCain's 2008 presidential campaign has 59 lobbyists raising money, more than any other candidate.

    As a candidate, McCain said he is one of the "great enemies of the pharmaceutical companies in Washington." He voted against the 2003 Medicare prescription-drug bill, which was avidly pushed by the pharmaceutical industry and provided for billions of dollars of new spending on drugs. McCain said he wanted the government to be able to negotiate lower drug prices and import cheaper drugs from Canada, both ideas that were adamantly opposed by industry lobbyists, and which ultimately failed.

    McCain has been active on global warming, proposing a carbon-trading system that was opposed by some in the oil and gas industries. McCain was also an early supporter of increasing corporate average fuel economy (known as CAFE) standards for automobile emissions. Says one lobbyist who represents oil and gas clients: "If McCain becomes the nominee, our choices aren't very good."

    On tobacco, McCain proposed sweeping anti-smoking legislation in the late 1990s that would have raised taxes on cigarettes, restricted the industry's ability to advertise and given the Food and Drug Administration broad new authority over tobacco companies. He estimated that it would cost the industry more than half a billion dollars over 25 years. The tobacco industry fought it to a standstill in the Senate.

    Health maintenance organizations have also tangled with McCain, who once joined forces with Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) to push for new regulations on HMOs.

    And many corporate leaders felt the campaign finance reform law that McCain co-sponsored with Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) was a threat to freedom of speech, since it limited large "soft money" donations to political parties.

    Perhaps McCain's most high-profile fight with an individual company was his years-long opposition to a $30 billion deal that would have allowed Boeing (BA, news, msgs) to lease 100 aerial refueling tankers to the U.S. Air Force.

    During an investigation led from his perch as chairman of the Commerce Committee, McCain uncovered evidence that led to guilty pleas from a high-level Air Force procurement officer and Boeing's then-chief financial officer, which badly embarrassed the aviation giant. Boeing officials declined to speak about McCain's campaign-trail successes, citing a policy of not commenting on presidential candidates.

    An insider's deep Rolodex

    That long history of sparring with industry may be one reason why Romney bested McCain in corporate fundraising in 2007. According to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics, both men depended heavily on business donors: They made up 84% of Romney's 2007 support and 78% of McCain's, but Romney heavily outpaced McCain in total dollars from business, raking in more than $35 million, compared to McCain's haul just shy of $21 million.

    Romney also raised more money than McCain in nearly every business sector, including agribusiness, communications and electronics, construction, finance, health and transportation, according to the same analysis.

    The only two sectors in which McCain had an edge were defense, where his vocal support of the Iraq war surge has surely had an impact -- and lawyers and lobbyists, from which group McCain's long years in Washington have given him a deep Rolodex of names.

    During a Jan. 27 appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," the Republican presidential candidate discusses his votes on the Bush tax cuts and other issues dear to conservatives. Corporate donors are famously pragmatic, and their financial backing of Romney may have been a reflection of the state of play of the campaign in 2007, when McCain had been all but given up for political dead and Romney appeared to have a strong chance at the GOP nomination. Now that equation seems to have flipped, and corporate financial support may flip too.

    And compared to a Democrat, many business leaders will overwhelmingly prefer McCain: in its most-recent Senate rankings, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce gave McCain an 80% favorable rating, compared with Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) at 67% and Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) at 55%. The Chamber did not rate Romney, who was not in the Senate.

    McCain's backers speak of a candidate who they say is a perfect match for the times. They tick off a litany of pro-business positions including McCain's support for low taxes, research and development tax credits for companies, increasing trade and globalization, increased availability of highly skilled workers through immigration and boosting education to create a competitive American work force.

    "That's an agenda that's good for the American people, and the agents of that agenda will be the businesses of America," says McCain's senior domestic policy adviser, Douglas Holtz-Eakin. "He will be a leader on economic issues the same way he has been on foreign policy issues."

    McCain also boasts of a list of big business backers including Cisco Systems (CSCO, news, msgs) Chief Executive John Chambers, Merrill Lynch (MER, news, msgs) CEO John Thain and former Hewlett-Packard (HPQ, news, msgs) CEO Carly Fiorina, who has been traveling on the campaign trail with McCain.

    "His record is far better than the record of the governor of Massachusetts," Fiorina told a business group in Michigan in January.


    http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Investing/Extra/IsMcCainBadForBusiness.aspx
  2. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    Sounds like he's against the government subsidizing business. Which isn't bad for business but can be bad for certain companies.
  3. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Well at least no matter who wins...Clinton...Obama or McCain...we'll finally have a President that believes in Global Warming and may actually do something about it.
  4. Aikbach

    Aikbach Active Member

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    The only thing the federal government can do about global warming is fuss about it and waste money on ethanol which ultimately leads to more gas expenditures, give it a rest, the government is no messiah, it can't even balance a checkbook.
  5. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    I'll NEVER give it a rest. The environment is one of MY top priorities and I'm not just talking about Global Warming...whether it is to you or not or whether you think the Government can do anything about it or not I could give a rats *** about.

    As long as I get a President that believes in it and is will to try to do something about it is all I care about.

    After seven years of Bush screwing the environment...any one of the three candidates will be a much welcome change.
  6. Aikbach

    Aikbach Active Member

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    Bush is expedient to blame but it isn't factually based since congress ratifies treaties not presidents and Kyoto took place two years before his administration.

    Be an environmentalist by all means, don't look to government for change for that is folly, change does not start at the top it begins at the bottom and so long as you are silly enough to put hope in candidates that run for high office you deserve to be disappointed.
  7. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Who said anything about Kyoto...there are PLENTY of things that Bush has done to mess with the Environment other than that. He's not a environmental President by any means.

    I'm not saying the next President is going to fix everything...that's not possible and I don't expect a tree hugger...althought I would love that.

    I just want one that's going to consider the environment when it comes to making decisions in the future...I don't think that Bush did that in the least...I think he put business before the environment at just about every turn...not saying every one...but I would say the vast majority...and I don't want that anymore.
  8. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    Examples?

    Name a few

    Its not that I do not believe you .... but I honestly have never seen an example of Bush "screwing the environment"

    Please educate us.
  9. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch Lost in the Woods

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    Fact is, presidents can have a significant impact on environmental policy for better or for worse. Clinton's spate of executive orders at the end of his term and Bush's attempts to counter them with his own are but two examples.
  10. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    This is just a small sample...from just one website...if you are REALLY interested check it out and the MANY more on the web...it's not hard to see that Bush really could give a damn about the environment...he cares more about business and his friends be it in the oil business or the timber business.

    http://www.nrdc.org/bushrecord/default.asp

    Bush administration air pollution plan would exempt 58,000 industrial sources
    March 01, 2005: A loophole in the Bush administration's air pollution plan would allow a wide range of industries to "opt out" of a Clean Air Act provision that requires significant reductions in toxic emissions by 2007. That loophole would exempt some 58,000 industrial boilers, process heaters used at industrial facilities like pulp and paper mills, oil refineries and chemical plants from complying with a federal rule requiring them to reduce their toxic air pollution. If passed in its present form, the administration's so-called Clear Skies legislation would also delay until after 2018 power plant sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emission cuts that are supposed to occur by 2010; roll back a requirement to reduce mercury emissions by up to 90 percent by 2008; and repeal the Clean Air Act's "new source review" program, which requires the nation's oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants to install modern pollution controls when they expand or make major modifications.
    "The president's 'dirty skies' bill legalizes massive air pollution for the benefit of the polluters and at the expense of public health," said John Walke, director of NRDC's clean air program.

    © 2008 Natural Resources Defense Council

    Bush touts air pollution plan at dirty power plant
    September 15, 2003: President Bush visited a Michigan power plant, using it as a backdrop to defend his administration's recent changes to Clean Air Act regulations and to call on Congress to pass his controversial air pollution legislation. The president touted the EPA's recent rollback of power plant pollution controls as necessary both to boost economic investment by industry and safeguard the environment. He claimed that his "Clear Skies" bill would cut power plant emissions of nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide and mercury by 70 percent.

    Environmentalists consider the new Clean Air Act exemptions for power plants a corporate giveaway that will allow 15,000 industrial facilities to increase pollution. The Clear Skies plan, they charge, is a misnamed initiative that actually will weaken and delay health protections under existing law. The bill fails to set limits on carbon dioxide emissions, a major cause of global warming. Critics have also chided the president for choosing to visit the Detroit Edison plant in Monroe, which is one of the nation's dirtiest polluters and, under Bush's plan, would not have to reduce pollution for the next 17 years.

    "Using this particular plant as a model for clean air policy is like Enron's Ken Lay writing a book on corporate integrity," said John Walke, director of NRDC's clean air program.

    © 2008 Natural Resources Defense Council

    Bush administration axes 'roadless rule'
    May 05, 2005: The Bush administration has formally repealed the Roadless Area Conservation Rule, which was issued by the U.S. Forest Service in January 2001 to protect the last remaining wildlands in our national forest system. The rule placed about one-third (58.5 million acres) of the national forest system's total acreage off-limits to virtually all road building and logging. Under the agency's rule change, state governors have 18 months to petition against the new policy and restore the "roadless rule," or offer alternative plans for development. Conservation groups disputed the administration's claim that the new rule gives governors more input since decisions -- and veto power -- remain in the hands of the Forest Service.

    The Forest Service has already prepared management plans that would allow the development of at least 34 million acres of roadless forest -- located in some 38 U.S. states and Puerto Rico -- to begin immediately. Even before today's announcement, 50 timber sales were moving forward to decimate pristine roadless areas in Alaska's wildest forests. The administration now is planning similar destruction in some of America's rarest wild places in the lower 48 states, according to environmentalists.

    "The president has replaced the roadless rule with the 'treeless rule,' and, in doing so, he has abolished one of the greatest forest conservation measures in U.S. history," said Neil Lawrence, director of NRDC's forest program. "Bush officials may say that they have amended, not repealed, the roadless rule. However, the treeless rule is about replacing real protections with a meaningless process."


    © 2008 Natural Resources Defense Council

    Bush plans to double logging in Western forests

    December 10, 2004: Agriculture Undersecretary Mark Rey, a former timber lobbyist, delighted attendees at the annual meeting of the Intermountain Forest Association with the news that the Bush administration soon will unveil forest management changes aimed at doubling logging on federal lands. While he cited wildfire prevention as the impetus for the increased "thinning," Rey told the private gathering of timber executives that the emphasis will be on cutting larger -- "commercially valuable" -- trees. While offering no specifics, Ray assured the audience that, "We're going to be active. We're nowhere near the end of what we want to do." The past four years under President Bush have seen a fourfold increase in the amount of national forest acreage "treated" (or logged), according to Rey -- ostensibly to reduce the risk of forest fires. Acknowledging the controversies sparked by this administration's forest policies, Rey joked that he holds the "indoor world record on being named a defendant in environmental litigation."

    "The last four years have been bad for national forests, but if Mr. Rey has his way, it will get much worse," said Nathaniel Lawrence, director of NRDC's forests program. "The timber companies are lining up to target our dwindling old-growth trees while the gatekeeper is one of their own."

    © 2008 Natural Resources Defense Council

    Bush administration planning to remove federal protection for America's wetlands and small waterways
    January 10, 2003: The Bush administration is seeking to lift federal protection for at least 20 percent of the nation's wetlands -- some 20 million acres of wetlands in all -- from industrial pollution or unlawful development. The administration issued two related documents: an "advanced notice of proposed rulemaking," which calls into question federal Clean Water Act protection for a variety of wetlands, streams and other waterbodies; and an attached "guidance" document for the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which orders their regional offices to withhold protections from certain wetlands and to seek federal advice before protecting other small waterways.

    The proposal opens up a range of possible rule changes, but any change would jeopardize the integrity of the Clean Water Act. Bush officials claim the new guidance was prompted by a narrow 2001 Supreme Court decision holding that so-called isolated waters did not earn Clean Water Act protection solely on the basis of their use by migratory birds. Isolated wetlands, such as prairie potholes, provide vital habitat for migratory birds and other species. Environmentalists say that narrow ruling should not be applied to the entire nation.

    "The Supreme Court did not suggest that the basic framework of the Clean Water Act be dismantled," said Daniel Rosenberg, an attorney in NRDC's clean water program. "Invoking this court decision is just an excuse to allow developers, mining companies, and other polluting industries to fill in wetlands and to dump waste into small streams. The effort to gut the Clean Water Act is moving forward because these industries have the ear of the White House."

    As a result of the administration's action, the federal government could soon abdicate its responsibility for protecting millions of acres of wetlands, creeks, streams, and ponds to the states. Since most states do not have programs to compensate if the administration kills federal protection, the new rules could lead to widespread development and mark the beginning of a wholesale weakening of water protections.

    © 2008 Natural Resources Defense Council
  11. ZeroClub

    ZeroClub just trying to get better

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    Depends on the business.

    The military industrial complex should do fine.

    And he's spoken in favor of green industry (i.e., finding solutions to environmental polution / global warming).
  12. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    But those examples are citing how he did not go far enough for the environmentalist likings.

    Where is an example were he actually "screwed the environment". Where what he did actually happened and destroyed some wildlife.

    Seems to me he actually made a lot of environmental laws.

    How does this compare to the Presidents from the last 50 years?
  13. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Repealing laws that were on the book like...

    The Bush administration has formally repealed the Roadless Area Conservation Rule, which was issued by the U.S. Forest Service in January 2001 to protect the last remaining wildlands in our national forest system. The rule placed about one-third (58.5 million acres) of the national forest system's total acreage off-limits to virtually all road building and logging.

    Isn't about environmentalist being unhappy he didn't go far enough...he didn't have to do anything but leave it alone...and it would have been fine...but NO he had to repeal the law and lets be honest we all know why...for the Timber Industry.

    Agriculture Undersecretary Mark Rey, a former timber lobbyist

    I mean come on man...don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining.

    Screwing the environment doesn't JUST mean that there are dead animals laying around...Although I'm sure there a just a few of those.

    There are many ways to screw the environment...Not protecting the Air or the water or the soil...There will be repercussions down the line for not doing that.
  14. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    So did this happen?

    I looked on this website and all it says is that the Administration wanted to do this.

    http://www.nrdc.org/land/forests/qroadless.asp

    Has he actually done anything to destroy the environment?

    Where is the 7 years of destruction?
  15. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    California sues Bush administration forest law repeal

    September 21, 2006


    Yesterday California sued the Bush Administration over its repeal of the Clinton era “Roadless Rule” which set aside large areas of forest from development.





    According to a release from state Attorney General Bill Lockyer, "The Northern Federal District of California ruled the U.S. Forest Service violated federal environmental laws by stripping national forest roadless areas of protection from road-building and logging without performing any environmental analysis of the consequences. The court ordered the immediate reinstatement of protections for nearly 50 million acres of remaining undeveloped forests."

    A news release from the state of California appears below.

    Attorney General Lockyer Announces Court Rules That Bush Unlawfully Removed Protection for Nearly 50 Million Acres of Forest Land

    Federal Magistrate Judge Reinstates “Roadless Rule” for U.S. Forests

    Attorney General Bill Lockyer today announced that the Northern Federal District of California ruled the U.S. Forest Service violated federal environmental laws by stripping national forest roadless areas of protection from road-building and logging without performing any environmental analysis of the consequences. The court ordered the immediate reinstatement of protections for nearly 50 million acres of remaining undeveloped forests.

    'Human footprint' to increase with repeal of roadless rule. The Bush administration's repeal a Clinton-era policy that banned road construction in nearly 60 million acres of wilderness will likely increase the 'human footprint' on pristine wildlands in the United States. Today the Bush administration repealed a federal rule that banned road construction, logging and other development in some 58.5 million acres of roadless public land. The new rule gives individual states an expanded role in determining the future of the remaining roadless areas of the country's national forests.

    United States has 7th highest rate of primary forest loss. Primary forests are being replaced by "modified natural," "seminatural," and plantation forests in the United States according to new deforestation figures from the United Nations. Monday, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) released its 2005 Global Forest Resources Assessment, a regular report on the status world's forest resources. FAO found that the United States has the seventh largest annual loss of primary forests in the world, ranking it the worst among wealthy countries in that department.

    Bush administration sued over forest decision. A coalition of 20 environmental groups sued the Bush administration Thursday to block road construction, logging and industrial development on more than 90,000 square miles of the nation's last untouched forests.

    Bush Administration misleads public on deforestation effort. The Bush Administration is misleading the American public and the United Nations about its efforts to address tropical deforestation according to analysis by the Tropical Forest Group, an environmental advocacy group based in Santa Barbara, California.



    “There is a public process to be followed,” said Lockyer. “And no agency can circumvent it. Today’s ruling is a solid victory for the rule of law, public participation, and government accountability. More than 4.4 million acres of pristine national forest in California and nearly 50 million acres nationwide are protected again.”

    In 2001, the Clinton Administration adopted a nationwide “Roadless Rule” that banned nearly all road-building and logging in national forest roadless areas. Roadless areas are landscapes of 5,000 or more contiguous acres virtually lacking in development. They provide a vital source of fresh water in the arid West, and habitat for more than 2,000 imperiled or sensitive species.

    In 2005, the Bush Administration repealed the Rule, allowed roadless areas to be managed under forest-specific land management plans that generally permitted some development, and established a new process whereby state governors could petition the Forest Service for less or more roadless-area protection within their state. The Attorneys General of California and New Mexico, the Governors of Washington and Oregon, and twenty environmental groups filed suit in the Northern District of California, challenging the Bush Administration’s new regulation as violating the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).

    NEPA requires federal agencies to analyze and publicize the environmental consequences of their proposed actions and to consider and compare alternative courses of action with an eye to minimizing environmental harm. The ESA requires that federal agencies consult with the Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service before undertaking any action that may affect threatened or endangered species. In repealing the Roadless Rule, the Forest Service did not prepare an impact statement, did not consider alternatives, and did not consult with the expert fish and wildlife agencies, the court determined.

    “It would strain credulity to hold that the repeal of the protections in [roadless areas] would not have any effect on the numerous [threatened and endangered] species that make their homes in the [roadless areas],” stated Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Laporte.

    The U.S. Forest Service claimed that its new regulation establishing a “State Petition” process was simply procedural therefore it required no NEPA or ESA process. The agency also asserted it could postpone an environmental analysis and ESA consultation until it received state-specific petitions, because until such time, any impact was speculative.

    The court rejected both arguments. Magistrate Judge Laporte wrote, “The impact of the State Petitions Rule is not speculative; it replaced the Roadless Rule, thereby reducing protections of [roadless areas] across the country by reverting to the land management plans for each forest.” The court further emphasized that plaintiffs’ challenge could not wait: “This is Plaintiffs’ only opportunity to challenge the programmatic Rule,” because “[n]o regulation any longer prevents additional projects in roadless areas from being approved and commenced during the petitioning process.”

    The U.S. Forest Service has 60 days from the entry of judgment to challenge today’s ruling in the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

    http://news.mongabay.com/2006/0921-ca.html

    And on a side note I said Bush Screwed the Environment not Destroyed it.

    But he's working on it. :D
  16. Aikbach

    Aikbach Active Member

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    I think a better question is should the president have such power? Big government backers always act puzzled when government runs away with power after being enabled to do so.

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