Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld refuses to say whether he supports the presidential candidacy of Republican nominee John McCain and tells The Hill through an aide that he, instead, is concentrating all his efforts on his private foundation and memoirs.
The lack of an official endorsement from Rumsfeld most likely stems from the rift caused between the two over a statement McCain made in the past regarding Rumsfeld’s tenure in the White House.
Rumsfeld, McCain declared, will "go down in history as one of the worst secretaries of defense in history."
An aide for Rumsfeld, Keith Urbahn, tells The Hill Rumsfeld no longer follows presidential elections. Instead he is focusing his energy on the Rumsfeld Foundation, an organization that encourages young people to participate in public service, and his memoirs.
“Mr. Rumsfeld is a Republican,” however, Urbahn quickly points out. “He has been helping Republican candidates for decades and he continues to do so this year.”
Urbahn likely is referring to contributions Rumsfeld and his wife, Joyce, made to GOP candidates this election season.
According to information provided by the Federal Election Commission, the Rumsfeld’s have donated approximately $40,000 to an array of Republican candidates this year, and another $40,000 to the National Republican Senatorial Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee.
No contributions, however, were in support of McCain.
In fact, records show Joyce Rumsfeld contributed $4,600 to rival Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign when the former Massachusetts governor ran against McCain during the early Republican primary contests.
For his part, Rumsfeld declined to comment to The Hill about his lack of endorsement for McCain, as did the McCain camp decline to comment for not gaining it.
The memoir Rumsfeld is currently writing about his time in the White House and his tenure as Bush’s defense secretary reportedly is scheduled for publication in 2010.
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