Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Shades of Hunter S. Thompson

In the book "Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail" Hunter writes about how he was ejected from the Nixon press plane. One of my favorite scenes in "Where The Buffalo Roam" Bill Murray as H.S.T. brilliantly recreates that passage from the book. My favorite scene happens when Bill as H.S.T. pisses on Nixons feet in the bathroom at the airport. I doubt if this really happened and it is deleted from the DVD. Now McCain has kicked Joe Klein off the McCain plane.

From Politico

Time columnist Joe Klein, who’s been a forceful critic of the McCain campaign (and already said he’s unwilling to accept a post-election apology), has found himself without a seat on the McCain or Palin planes the past four months.

In June, Klein was kept from boarding the McCain plane over what they said had been a security issue. More recently, when trying to fly on the Palin plane last week, Klein told Politico over e-mail that the campaign's response was he “couldn’t be accommodated at this time.”

“I’ve done nine presidential campaigns and this is the first time this has ever happened to me,” Klein said. “I was even allowed—I won’t say welcomed—on the Clinton plane in the summer of 1996 after I was revealed as the author of Primary Colors.”

“I rode with McCain during the primaries, but not since I asked him—at a June press conference—whether he really believed Ahmadinejad was the ‘leader’ of Iran, since he has no control over foreign policy or the nuclear program,” Klein continued. “That was when they suddenly told me that I hadn’t called in time to get secret service clearance. (I had called more than a day in advance.)"
But he’s not the first high-profile critic to get the cold shoulder.

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that she had been “banned” by the campaign for what they told her was “the foreseeable future.” Despite Dowd being kept off the planes, The Times continues to have reporters travel with the campaign. Similarly, other Time magazine staffers, including Washington bureau chief Jay Carney, " reporter Michael Scherer, and Mark Halperin (The Page), have not had a problem with access.

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