Karl Rove advising McCain campaign
For several weeks, a variety of political observers, most notably ThinkProgressÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Amanda Terkel and Matt Corley, have highlighted Karl RoveÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s connections to John McCainÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s campaign. And for several weeks, BushÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s former chief strategist Ã¢â‚¬â€� the man the president affectionately calls Ã¢â‚¬Å“Turd BlossomÃ¢â‚¬Â� Ã¢â‚¬â€� has been arguing that there really isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t a relationship.
Just a couple of weeks ago, George Stephanopoulos identified Rove as an Ã¢â‚¬Å“informal adviserÃ¢â‚¬Â� to McCain before an ABC News interview. Rove denied it, and when Stephanopoulos suggested that Rove offers the McCain camp advice and information, Rove would only concede to Ã¢â‚¬Å“chit chatÃ¢â‚¬Â� with the Republican presidential campaign.
Not surprisingly, there appears to be a little more to the relationship. Peter Stone writes in National Journal:
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Generally speaking, RoveÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s advice [for McCain] is action-oriented and useful,Ã¢â‚¬Â� said another senior consultant to the McCain camp. Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s always well received.Ã¢â‚¬Â� This McCain adviser noted that Rove talks periodically to [McCainÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s chief political strategist, Charlie Black] and a few other top campaign aides on several key matters.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“It can be policy ideas, messaging ideas, fundraising prospects, or people who need calls from someone in the campaign.Ã¢â‚¬Â� Rove is Ã¢â‚¬Å“part of the information network that the campaign has,Ã¢â‚¬Â� this adviser said, adding that Rove talks fairly regularly to such key people as Wayne Berman, a major fundraiser for McCain; Nicolle Wallace, a communications adviser; and Steve Schmidt, a senior aide.This isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t necessarily a surprise, but itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s interesting for a few reasons.