by Max Brantley
Bro. v. Bro. on the Bro. Gov.
Asa Hutchinson has endorsed John McCain for president. Not that that means a whole lot at this point.
But it's amusing. You probably remember earlier in the campaign when Asa! was quoted as saying nice things about Mike Huckabee when a number of Arkansas Republicans were dissing The Huckster. (See Huckabee news release on his Arkansas GOP Leadership Team. Some leadership.)
It was pointed out to me some time ago that, "Leadership Team" not withstanding, Asa had very carefully avoided specific endorsement terminology. His brother Tim Hutchinson, the former senator, has been front and center on stage with Huck at several campaign events, however. He embraced him on national TV on one memorable occasion.
McCain's news release talks about Asa's great record on national security. Wonder if he's read our cover story this week about the sorts of folks Hutchinson brought with him to Washington? Or if he's heard of a little place name of Mena.
ARLINGTON, VA -- U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today announced that former Arkansas Congressman Asa Hutchinson has endorsed John McCain for president.
"John McCain understands that a president's first obligation is the security of the American people," said Congressman Hutchinson. "John McCain has been involved in every national security issue for more than twenty years. He has the judgment and integrity to lead our country in the midst of great challenges at home and abroad. I am confident that John is the candidate best prepared to serve as president from day one, and I am proud to offer him my support."
John McCain thanked Congressman Hutchinson for his endorsement, saying, "Asa spent the first part of his career working on behalf of the people of Arkansas. Before he was elected, and after he left Congress, both President Reagan and President Bush recognized his commitment to our nation with appointments to critical positions in government. He is a true public servant and I am proud to have his support."
Congressman Hutchinson served the people of Arkansas from 1997-2001. While in Congress, he was a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Judiciary Committee. After being re-elected to his third term, he was appointed as Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, where he combined tough law enforcement initiatives with advocating increased investment in treatment and education programs. In 2003 he was appointed by President Bush and confirmed by a unanimous vote of the U.S. Senate to serve as Under Secretary for Border and Transportation Security. While at the Department of Homeland Security, Mr. Hutchinson led an effort to reform border inspections through the use of biometric technology and oversaw the reorganization of border agencies into a unified inspection force. Prior to his election to Congress, Mr. Hutchinson practiced law in rural Arkansas for 21 years. During this time, he was appo inted by President Ronald Reagan as U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas.