Before Ron Fournier returned to The Associated Press in March 2007, the veteran political reporter had another professional suitor: John McCain’s presidential campaign.
In October 2006, the McCain team approached Fournier about joining the fledgling operation, according to a source with knowledge of the talks. In the months that followed, said a source, Fournier spoke about the job possibility with members of McCain’s inner circle, including political aides Mark Salter, John Weaver and Rick Davis.
Salter, who remains a top McCain adviser, said in an e-mail to Politico that Fournier was considered for “a senior advisory role” in communications.
“He did us the courtesy of considering the offer before politely declining it,” Salter said.
Karl Rove exchanged e-mails about Pat Tillman with Associated Press reporter Ron Fournier, under the subject line “H-E-R-O.” In response to Mr. Fournier’s e-mail, Mr. Rove asked, “How does our country continue to produce men and women like this,” to which Mr. Fournier replied, “The Lord creates men and women like this all over the world. But only the great and free countries allow them to flourish. Keep up the fight.”
He would fit right in with the Rove proteges at the McCain campaign.