The New York Times reports on Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) relationship with lobbyist Vicki Iseman during his first run for the GOP nomination in 2000, which often led to political favors:
A champion of deregulation, Mr. McCain wrote letters in 1998 and 1999 to the Federal Communications Commission urging it to uphold marketing agreements allowing a television company to control two stations in the same city, a crucial issue for Glencairn Ltd., one of Ms. Iseman’s clients. [...]
In late 1999, Ms. Iseman asked Mr. McCain’s staff to send a letter to the commission to help Paxson, now Ion Media Networks, on another matter. Mr. Paxson was impatient for F.C.C. approval of a television deal, and Ms. Iseman acknowledged in an e-mail message to The Times that she had sent to Mr. McCain’s staff information for drafting a letter urging a swift decision.
Mr. McCain complied. He sent two letters to the commission, drawing a rare rebuke for interference from its chairman.
The Times reports that McCain denied having an affair with Iseman.
UPDATE: In a statement tonight, the McCain campaign claimed that the Senator has “never violated the public trust, never done favors for special interests or lobbyists.”