Raising McCain

Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and Crown Princess Matte-Merit arrive at Incheon Airport on May 7, 2007, in Incheon, South Korea.

Face The Nation anchor Bob Schieffer is CBS News' Chief Washington Correspondent.

Haven't I seen this movie already?

Campaign finance reform, which would have cut off those unlimited backdoor contributions called soft money, got derailed again.

Neither party wants public credit for killing it. It's better politics to blame the other party, which both parties are doing. Republican leaders have never liked these reforms and Democratic support began to melt when it looked as if the reforms might actually become law.

CBS News Correspondent
Bob Schieffer

Now, by killing reform with parliamentary tactics on a procedural vote, they have the best of all worlds. The money will keep rolling in — and they can blame the other side.

And they finally got even with John McCain, who has made enemies in both parties by pushing reform for so long.

But here's the irony: McCain has been saying all along he has no plans to run for president as a third party independent candidate.

But doesn't this give him the perfect excuse? The script writes itself. Both parties are so beholden to the big money interests, it will take someone else to clean up the mess, and so on.

I have no idea what McCain will do, but you could make the case that the only person who came out of this stronger politically is McCain. For sure, he has an issue to run on.

I'm not sure that's what opponents of campaign finance reform had in mind.

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