The McCain House Count Continues

Ezra Klein counts nine, but they are owned by at least half a dozen holding companies and family trust funds, all controlled by Cindy McCain and her children. Plus, the McCains’ primary residence, in Phoenix, was originally two separate condominiums; the McCains bought both of them (for $4,666,814) so they could combine them into one 6,000-7,000-square-foot living space.

Eric Kleefeld and Lila Shapiro at TPM Election Central come up with a range of eight to 11 homes, depending on the calculation method used.

Via Lindsay Beyerstein, here is John McCain’s Senate Financial Disclosure Statement. It’s jaw-dropping.

Publius points out that the difference in the way McCain and Obama respond to being caught in an embarrassing revelation or mistake is very revealing of the difference in their temperaments:

Predictably, the McCain campaign went into full hothead mode in response to Obama’s attacks, flailing about desperately and bringing up Rezko. A few observations on this.

First, it’s further evidence that McCain is at his absolute very worst in responding to a crisis. He and his campaign’s initial instincts are always to lash out emotionally and lead with his chin. It doesn’t matter if it’s a foreign policy crisis (Russia-Georgia), or a gaffe, McCain’s trademark is a “reflexive, righteous blunderbuss” reaction that often causes more problems than the initial situation did.

The Rezko business for instance is just absurd and it reflects McCain’s more fundamental problem of a lack of discipline. The Obama team, by contrast, rarely lets itself go off-message even when in attack mode. Notice that the new populist attacks are still tied into the “more of the same” theme that Obama’s been pushing from Day One.

Jimmy Orr, at the Christian Science Monitor‘s election blog, reminds us (if anyone needed reminding) just how extraordinary it is to not know how many homes you have:

It was a simple question: How many homes do you own? Although polling is not yet available, conventional wisdom would indicate that most Americans can answer that question. An unscientific newsroom poll here at the Monitor backed that conventional wisdom: 100 percent of those polled could answer the question without hesitation. Remember, this was an unscientific poll, however. And the margin for error was 3 percentage points. So technically speaking the results could be 97 percent to 3 percent.

But the answer wasn’t simple for presidential candidate John McCain.

Kevin Drum, in his first post at his new blogging home, points to a Los Angeles Times piece that reveals Sen. McCain’s unique way of demonstrating that he is not the callous, out-of-touch, elitist multimillionaire that having more homes than he can count would seem to indicate he is:

McCain, who huddled with advisors at his desert compound in Sedona, Ariz., said nothing in public. A nine-car motorcade took him to a nearby Starbucks early in the morning, where he ordered a large cappuccino. McCain otherwise avoided reporters.

Wealthy as he is, it seems odd that McCain doesn’t have an assistant who can run out and pick up a large cappuccino for him.

The award for idiotic wingnut comment for the day goes to JammieWearingFool, for this:

They really think they have an issue here, but it reflects more on how weak their candidate is if they think this will translate into votes. What they overlook is the fact Americans aspire to be wealthy, not to be jealous of it.

Funny, wingnuts didn’t think McCain’s “celebrity” ad reflected on the weakness of their candidate for believing that comparing Obama to Paris Hilton and Britney Spears would translate into votes. What the Fool overlooks is that it’s precisely because many Americans aspire to wealth that they are so offended by a candidate for public office whose vast wealth is entirely unearned:

I’m not a big fan of targeting politicians for their wealth. I don’t begrudge anyone succeeding and admire many fabulously wealthy Americans. But the inheritance – rather than earning – of great riches can rub some the wrong way. George W. Bush is not wealthy because he earned it; his family connections made all the difference. And John McCain, who hails from a very privileged family, married money that most people can barely imagine. If your house just got foreclosed on, or you can’t afford the mortgage any more, this is not someone you can easily identify with:

Those real estate holdings include a Sedona ranch with three dwellings, worth $1.1 million; a Phoenix condominium suite that had originally been two units, worth $4.7 million; an $847,800 three-bedroom high-rise condo in Arlington; an oceanfront condo in La Jolla, Calif.; a half-million-dollar loft in Phoenix purchased for their daughter Meghan; another Phoenix condo, worth $830,000; and two beachfront condos in Coronado, Calif, one of which is valued at $2.7 million. The other was purchased just this year, as McCain was lamenting the difficulties that struggling Americans were facing just to make their mortgage payments. Cindy McCain told Vogue magazine the family needed the second condo because the first was getting too crowded as their family grew.

I don’t know about you, but this is more distant to me than someone who just earned a bunch of royalties for a book he actually wrote himself.

One Response to “The McCain House Count Continues”

  1. Sure, the report’s lengthy & bears enough citations to qualify as splendid, but are these really valuable tidings? Attempting to handle the local Vancouver real estate market, what touches me personally (and what I’m sure realtors in the states worry their heads silly) is how the market will develop in the next semester/year/decennium. Your article’s great, but does it lead the reader into any specific conclusion? It is with that thought I leave you.

    My best regards,
    Jay

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