by Jordan Zakarin
Another adviser to Arizona Senator John McCain has stepped down from the presumptive Republican nominee’s campaign for President, fueled by questions over his ties to Mongolian warlord Genghis Khan. The resignation was the fifth in a series of losses for the campaign as McCain tries to draw distance between himself and the 12th century Asian conqueror.
The GOP nominee has come under increasing media scrutiny as attention has shifted back to his campaign after a hard fought Democratic contest between Senators Hillary Clinton of New York and Barack Obama of Illinois, now the likely Democratic nominee. That extra press attention has helped unearth revelations of the GOP standard bearer’s close relationships with a number of advisers that have ties to figures that would hurt his media-made image of an independent maverick.
This latest abrupt exit of an adviser was the result of a swift reaction by the campaign to charges of personal favors done for Khan, whom McCain met as a young man serving in Southeast Asia. The now dismissed adviser was rumored to be working as a lobbyist for the Mongol Empire, which rose to prominence in 1210 when Genghis Khan’s armies defeated the Western Xia empire of northwestern China and Tibet. Complicating the matter is the deep personal interest McCain had in working to secure assistance for the ruthless dictator’s siege and conquest of the Jin Dynasty in 1211 through1215.
Past aides to McCain say that the two were fast friends, sharing a similar worldview and belief system when it came to international affairs.
A spokesperson for the Arizona Republican, while acknowledging the seeming conflict of interest, worked to minimize the significance of both the resignation and the candidate’s close friendship with the warlord, whose given name was Temüjin before becoming chief of his once nomadic tribe.
“Obviously, it’s been a bit of a rough week, in terms of things that the media has dug up that have surprised even us,” the spokesperson stated. “Let me be clear: I can categorically deny that Senator McCain has any inappropriate working relationship with Genghis Khan or the Mongolian Empire.”
“The Senator is a well-liked legislator, who can separate the personal and the business of the people. So, while he has a healthy respect for the Khan, built over many years of correspondence and friendship, as president John McCain will operate independently from any and all 12th century Mongol warlords.”