- NAME: John McCain
- OCCUPATION: Military Leader, U.S. Representative
- BIRTH DATE: August 29, 1936 (Age: 76)
- EDUCATION: Episcopal High School, United States Naval Academy
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Coco Solo Naval Air Station, Panama Canal Zone
- Full Name: John Sidney McCain III
- AKA: John McCain
- AKA: John Sidney McCain
- ZODIAC SIGN: Virgo
Best Known For
John McCain is a military hero and Republican U.S. Senator defeated by Barack Obama in the 2008 United States presidential election.
John McCain - Full Biography (43:23)
Before leaving to serve his country, John McCain was what many called a "party boy," and not the tough-as-nails hero he would be labeled later in life.
In 2008, then Presidential hopeful John McCain nominated Sarah Palin to be his running mate in his Presidential campaign.
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McCain's introduction to politics came in 1976, when he was assigned as the Navy's liaison to the U.S. Senate. In 1981, after marrying his second wife, Cindy Hensley, McCain retired from the Navy, and moved to Phoenix, Arizona. While working in public relations for his father-in-law's beer distribution business, he began establishing connections in politics.
McCain was first elected to political office on November 2, 1982,
easily winning a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives after his well-known war record helped overcome doubts about his "carpetbagger" status. He was re-elected in 1984.
Having adapted well to the largely conservative politics of his home state, McCain was a loyal supporter of the Reagan administration and found his place among other "New Right," or conservative, politicians.
In 1986, after the retirement of longtime Arizona senator and prominent Republican Barry Goldwater, McCain won election to the U.S. Senate. Both in the House and the Senate, McCain earned a reputation as a conservative politician who was not afraid to question the ruling Republican orthodoxy. In 1983, for example, he called for the withdrawal of U.S. Marines from Lebanon, and publicly criticized the administration's handling of the Iran-Contra affair.
From 1987 to 1989, McCain underwent a federal investigation as a member of the "Keating Five," a group of senators who were accused of improperly intervening with federal regulators on behalf of Charles H. Keating Jr., a bank chairman whose Lincoln Savings & Loan Association eventually became one of the biggest savings-and-loan disasters of the late 1980s. He was eventually cleared of the charges, although investigators declared that he had exercised "poor judgment" by meeting with the regulators.
McCain weathered the scandal and won re-election to the Senate three times, each time with a solid majority. His reputation as a "maverick politician" with firm beliefs and a quick temper only increased, and many were impressed by his willingness to be extremely open with the public and the press. He has worked diligently in support of increased tobacco legislation and reforming the campaign finance system, professing more liberal views and generally proving to be more complex than a straight-ahead conservative.
In 1999, McCain published Faith of My Fathers, the story of his family's military history and his own experiences as a POW. He also emerged as a solid challenger to the frontrunner, Governor George W. Bush of Texas, for the Republican presidential nomination in 2000. Many people from both political parties found his straight talk refreshing. In the New Hampshire primary, McCain won by a surprisingly wide margin, largely bolstered by independent voters and cross-over Democrats.
After a roller-coaster ride during the primaries—Bush won South Carolina, while McCain captured Michigan and Arizona—Bush emerged triumphant on "Super Tuesday" in early March 2000, winning New York and California, among several other states.
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