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The old straight shooter of the 2000 campaign is now controlled message McCain.

New campaign strategist Steve Schmidt, carefully screens reporters that board the “Straight Talk Express private jet.  Journalists that ask those pesky questions McCain does not feel comfortable talking about (like the economy) will not get access to the nominee.  What self respected journalist would board that plane?  Can you imagine them bragging to their colleagues. "I'm one of the chosen few.”  There's a price to pay for that type of journalist, ask former New York Times columnist Judith Miller. Today ,CNN was allowed to carry a 10 minute live press conference with John McCain ,but his assigned press pool(the ones with the questions) were conveniently 27 miles away unaware of the press conference.  These are the same tactics, the Bush administration, was using prior to the invasion of Iraq. Selective coverage.

Another tactic being used is a staged audience without protesters. Yesterday an elderly librarian was ticketed for carrying a McCain=Bush sign… She was told she would be arrested if she came back again. Now, Bush and McCain are both Republicans, so how is that a protest sign?I remember the questions Bush used to get at these controlled events,if it was not so laughable ;it would have been be sicking.

Most campaigns use a first-come first-served, when dealing with call-in journalist, not the McCain campaign, conference calls will be screened for questions much like the Rush Limbaugh show or the president’s daily press conference.

This not the maverick John McCain ,I admired in 2000.