“Political independent” anti-Kerry vet Schachte contributed to George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004

On August 27, syndicated columnist Robert Novak presented his interview with retired Rear Admiral William L. Schachte Jr. -- who claims to be the commander on the boat* and witness to the events leading to Senator John Kerry's (D-MA) first Purple Heart -- as decisive evidence supporting the anti-Kerry group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth's allegation that Kerry did not deserve the award. John E. O'Neill, co-founder of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and co-author of Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry, cited Schachte in his book and in television appearances. While Novak wrote that Schachte “said he is a political independent who has voted for candidates of both parties,” Schachte has a history of political contributions heavily weighted to Republicans, including $1,000 to George W. Bush's presidential campaigns in both 2000 and 2004.

Since 1997, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, Schachte has contributed $8,500 to federal candidates or national political organizations. All but $1,750 of those donations have gone to Republican candidates or to the Republican Party:

$250 to Senator Charlie Condon (R-SC)
$1,000 to President George W. Bush (R)

$500 to Representative James W. Demint (R-SC)

$1,250 to Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
$250 to Representative Joel Hefley (R-CO)
$250 to Senator Wayne Allard (R-CO)
$250 to Henry Brown (R-candidate in SC)

$250 to Republican Party of South Carolina
$750 to Henry Brown (R-candidate in SC)
$500 to Representative John M. Spratt (D-SC)
$1,000 to then-Governor George W. Bush (R)
$250 to H.B. “Buck” Limehouse (R-candidate in SC)

$500 to Senator John W. McCain (R-AZ), presidential candidate

$250 to Representative John M. Spratt (D-SC)
$1,000 to Representative Bob Inglis (R-SC)
$1,000 Senator Ernest F. Hollings (D-SC)

$250 to Representative John M. Spratt (D-SC)

On August 27, writer and blogger Joshua Micah Marshall noted that Schachte is the new law partner of David A. Norcross at the law firm Blank Rome LLP. According to Blank Rome's website, Norcross “was recently appointed Chairman of the Republican National Convention's Committee on Arrangements for the 2004 Republican National Convention.”

*Correction: When this item was first published, it incorrectly stated that Schachte “claims to be the fourth crewman on the boat who witnessed the events leading to Senator John Kerry's (D-MA) first Purple Heart.” In fact, Schachte claims he commanded the boat, while Kerry and another enlisted man served as his two crewmen. [back up to article]