Wife's Beer Co. Could Be Big Headache for McCain

Conflict-of-interest brewhaha if Mac wins
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 22, 2008 7:36 AM CDT
Hensley & Co. headquarters.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
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(Newser) – Cindy McCain's role as chairwoman of one of the nation’s largest beer wholesalers could turn into a thorny conflict-of-interest problem if John McCain wins the White House, the Los Angeles Times reports. Mrs. McCain's Hensley & Co.—one of its executives is John McCain's son, Andrew—takes an active role in lobbying against alcohol-related legislation. While her husband has long recused himself from such issues as a senator, he wouldn't be able to easily do so as president.

“You can't run a beer company out of the White House,” said one political science professor. “McCain is leaving a live hand grenade on the table, a major embarrassment.” Some experts think the potential first lady might assuage concerns by establishing a blind trust if her husband is elected, but others are skeptical.