The truth behind the Cindy McCain drug scandal
What I want to know is, why is it that no one went after her for causing so much media and reputation damage that is closed down the AVMT. And how can she say her actions did not compromise the AVMT? Has anyone actually done any investigations into whether children suffered as a result of her actions. Obviously they did, the program was closed down.
And what else strikes me funny about this, is that McCain charged the man with extortion for offering to settle his wrongful termination suit. One could argue he was wrongfully terminated. Not only was he going to blow the whistle on Cindy, but the budgetary problems were probably directly linked to drug shortages in the program which cost them money. Hello!
Prescription drug addiction
In 1989, Cindy McCain became addicted to Percocet and Vicodin, opioid painkillers, which she initially took to alleviate pain following two spinal surgeries for ruptured discs, and to ease emotional stress during the Keating Five affair. The addiction progressed to where she was taking upwards of twenty pills a day, and she resorted to having an AVMT physician write illegal prescriptions in the names of three AVMT employees without their knowledge. In 1992, her parents staged an intervention to force her to get help; she told her husband about her problem, attended a drug treatment facility, began outpatient sessions, and ended her three years of addiction. Surgery in 1993 resolved her back pain.
In January 1993, Tom Gosinski, an AVMT employee, who had discovered her illegal drug use, was terminated on budgetary grounds. Subsequently, he tipped off the Drug Enforcement Administration, and a federal investigation ensued. McCain's defense team, led by John McCain's Keating Five lawyer John Dowd, secured an agreement with the U.S. Attorney's office for McCain, a first-time offender, that avoided charges while requiring her to pay financial restitution, enroll in a diversion program and do community service. Meanwhile, in early 1994 Gosinski filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against McCain, which he told her he would settle for $250,000. In response, Dowd characterized this request as blackmail and requested that officials investigate Gosinski for extortion. In the end, both Gosinski's lawsuit and the extortion investigation against him were dropped.
Knowing that the DEA prosecutors were about to publicly disclose her past addiction, McCain preemptively revealed the story to reporters saying she was doing so willingly: "Although my conduct did not result in compromising any missions of AVMT, my actions were wrong, and I regret them."
AVMT concluded its activities in 1995 in the wake of the McCain narcotics prescriptions controversy. That year, McCain founded a new organization, the Hensley Family Foundation, which donates monies towards children's programs in Arizona and nationally, and she was largely a stay-at-home mom during the balance of the 1990s. She also held positions as vice president, director, and vice chair of Hensley & Co.