Sunday, June 29, 2008

Roberta McCain: a charming and feisty lady

Pat recently did an interesting post about Cindy McCain. This morning I read an interesting piece about John's mother, Roberta McCain, by James Rainey at the LA Times:

Roberta McCain steals reporter's heart, strikes fear in handlers'
A formal interview with John McCain's mother proves elusive to arrange. But she picks up the phone on the first ring.


I concede, with only a tinge of embarrassment, that I've been captivated by that world traveler, grandmother, freeway speedster and potential First Mother of the United States, Roberta McCain.

But after months waiting in vain for a formal interview, I'm beginning to believe that her son's presidential campaign really isn't interested in getting Roberta McCain and me together for, as the man likes to call it, a little "straight talk."

"They've got me muzzled," Mrs. McCain, 96, said when I phoned the other day. She added with a chuckle: "Now don't you print that. . . . I really don't like to be interviewed." [...]

I learned some things I didn't know. She has a twin sister, Rowena, and she has traveled a lot and had a very interesting life. When asked about people saying that John is too old to be president, she said:

[...] I mentioned that some thought her son, at 71, was too old to be president.

"I don't think that has anything to do with it," Mrs. McCain responded firmly. "My father was taking care of his business in his 90s and walking five miles a day until the day he died.

"I don't think there is any question that he has the experience and the wisdom and the accomplishments. That's something. I don't think the others can compare, do you?" [...]

The article is based on a series of phone calls the reporter had with her, not a formal interview. It's a bit of a puff piece, as he's probably fishing for permission for a more formal meeting. But he does ask her about John's temper, and she is quite adamant in her reply. Read the whole thing.

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