06/07/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

McCain Campaign Manager's Lobbying Firm Worked For Client With Ties To Iran

The McCain campaign's lobbyist ties have proved to be a persistent source of criticism as well as questioning during this election season, and it shows no immediate signs of letting up.

Talking Points Memo reported Friday that McCain campaign manager Rick Davis' lobbying firm worked for a client with ties to Iran:

Before Rick Davis began serving as John McCain's campaign manager, his lobbying firm had a pretty cosmopolitan set of clients.

For example, Ukranian billionaire Rinat Akhmetov, who has several business links to Iran.

To be sure, there's a good crowd of lobbyists in Washington who work for international firms with ties to Iran.

But Davis isn't just any lobbyist. He's a lobbyist-turn-presidential campaign manager who just a couple weeks ago was drawing up rules on how to build a wall between lobbyists and McCain's political operatives. And McCain has been more hawkish than most of his colleagues about confronting Iran.

And as Politico's Jonathan Martin notes, McCain's senior aides are continuing their courtship of K Street:

John McCain's campaign manager and other senior officials met with about 70 top Republican lobbyists yesterday, making the case for why McCain is well-positioned and explaining why they've enacted tough rules barring the involvement of registered lobbyists in the campaign.[...]

The session, held at the GOP's Capitol Hill Club, was the second of three meetings planned between McCain's campaign and members of Washington's powerful lobbying community. Yesterday was aimed at those who work for multi-client firms. The campaign has previously met with representatives of trade associations and will later address those from the Washington office of corporations and businesses.