In an interview on MSNBC yesterday, JD Hayworth made MSNBC's liberal Rachel Maddow look like she hadn't done her homework and was merely repeating poorly researched DNC talking points. First, she asked him why he was running for office considering he had received the most money of any Congressman from disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Hayworth responded and said he'd only received $2250 total from Abramoff, which he returned to charity after he'd learned about Abramoff's ties to corruption. In contrast, he noted that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee among others had received MORE money from Abramoff than that. (the logical conclusion to that from Maddow should be, then why are they still around?)
Hayworth also said that Abramoff never came to his office, and never lobbied him. Maddow still didn't give up, and said that Hayworth's own Chief of Staff admitted Hayworth had received over $150,000 from Abramoff. Hayworth told Maddow her researchers must not be doing a very good job, since even the New York Times has printed a retraction about that. Hayworth added that contributions he received from Indian tribes - which he also returned - are different than money from Abramoff; the tribes are sovereign entities that do what they want. Hayworth pointed out that McCain, who chaired the Senate investigation that looked into Abramoff, never mentioned Hayworth once during the entire investigation. So it's a bit fishy that McCain is trying to tarnish Hayworth with a connection to Abramoff now.
Next, Maddow accused Hayworth of unethical behavior by throwing fundrasiers in skyboxes belonging to Abramoff at sporting events. Hayworth responded and said his staff thoroughly researched the legality of doing so, and when they couldn't determine the answer, Hayworth contacted the Federal Election Commission and asked them. The FEC determined there was no problem. Consequently, no charges were ever brought against Hayworth by the FEC or any other entity.
Maddow then asked Hayworth about an accusation the McCain campaign has been using against him, voting for a bill that contained earmarks, a Bush transportation bill that provided funding for transportation infrastructure in Arizona. Hayworth explained that voting once for transportation infrastructure in Arizona (which is around the second fastest growing state in the nation), is a lot less worse than McCain's recent votes for numerous bailouts, where the money goes to grease the palms of special interests, banks, etc
Finally, Maddow asked Hayworth about something he'd said recently about gay marriage. Hayworth said on a Florida radio show that the way the Massachusetts Supreme Court had defined marriage in order to permit gay marriage could open the floodgates to all kinds of things, like marrying a horse. He said the Massachusetts court defined marriage too broadly, as an "establishment of intimacy." Maddow disagreed, and then read some wording from the court decision. The language all vaguely sounded like an establishment of intimacy, there was very little specificity in it that would preclude marrying a horse. Sorry Maddow, regardless of all the 2-line blog profanity-laden supportive comments and tweets coming from your supporters on the left who don't like JD, you lost this one.