September 11th, 2008
09:28 PM ET
6 years ago

Former GOP senator calls Palin a 'cocky wacko'

 Former Rhode Island Sen. Lincoln Chafee has words for Sarah Palin.
Former Rhode Island Sen. Lincoln Chafee has words for Sarah Palin.

(CNN) – Former Rhode Island Sen. Lincoln Chafee was known for keeping a low-key profile on Capitol Hill, but the Republican -turned -Independent is making waves with his exceedingly blunt comments on newly-minted Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin:

She's a "cocky wacko," he told a Washington think tank earlier this week.

WATCH: Chafee make the remarks

Chafee, the lone Senate Republican to vote against the Iraq war who endorsed Obama's White House bid earlier this year, told an audience at the New America Foundation in Washington Tuesday that Palin's selection has energized Obama backers.

"People were coming into my office, phone calls were flooding in, e-mails were coming in, 'I just sent money to Obama, I couldn't sleep last night' - from the left. To see this cocky wacko up there," he said.

He also described McCain's candidacy as "lackluster” and described the selection of Palin as a throwing "this firestorm, this tornado, into the whole presidential election."


Chafee, whose father served as senator from Rhode Island from 1976 until his death in 1999, narrowly lost his re-election bid two years ago to Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse amid that election cycle’s wave of anti-Republican sentiment.

Chafee made a stir earlier this year when he directly called out Democrats who supported the Iraq war and were now expressing regret for their vote.

“I find it surprising now, in 2008, how many Democrats are running for president after shirking their constitutional duty to check and balance this president,” he wrote in his January 2008 book, “Against the Tide.” “Being wrong about sending Americans to kill and be killed, maim and be maimed, is not like making a punctuation mistake in a highway bill."


Filed under: Extra • Sarah Palin
soundoff (373 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    See what Karl Rove started. Momentum.

    September 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  2. Dan, Ohio

    Now that's just funny.

    September 11, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  3. Voter

    Mr. Chafee could not be more right!

    I'm willing to bet that is the opinion of a good many Republican Senate and House members who still have a job to protect.

    September 11, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  4. Nick - Arlington, VA

    true. all of it.

    September 11, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. Bubba

    Cocky Whacko? I think I saw him warming up for the Bonzo Dog Band in 72. Heck of a show.
    I prefer calling her the Trojan Moose, myself, but I'm not picky.

    September 11, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  6. enigma

    HAHAHAHAHAH

    September 11, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  7. Tony

    Hear! Hear! Sen. Chafee.

    Couoldn't agree more!

    September 11, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  8. Dee Jay a young republican

    And he is Right

    Obama Biden 08

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  9. Tony

    Hear! Hear! Sen. Chafee.

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  10. Sherry

    Sarah who :) :) :)!

    Obama 08 and 12 - people are not crazy, they can see right through the Republicans - your tactis worked in 2000 and 2004, but "not this time!"

    Thanks, Mr. Chafee.

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  11. Helene

    You bet she is wacko. She is so frightening that I regret she was not drowned at birth.

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  12. Terry, Butte, Mt

    Palin – Rookie of the earmark

    Mind over chatter – vote Obama

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  13. jay

    DEAD ON. haha!

    September 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  14. Common Sense

    OUCH!!!

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. Michael

    OK, lets see the RePugnicans call this one out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Its about time someone said what a lot of us Americans are thinking!

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  16. Anyonmous

    How sweet the news media thinks we care what they think when it comes to these sorry attempts at swaying voters.

    And here I thought the protections they enjoy are at lest in a teeny part related to being objective.

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  17. Linda

    This coming from a "former" Senator. The people of Rhode Island woke up. He lost despite the anti-republican feeling in the country in 2006.

    How dare he judge this woman as a cocky wacko. Does he know Governor Palin? Has he even had a conversation with her? Probably not. Just thought he'd keep himself in the public view should there be an opening for "dog catcher" in Rhode Island.

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  18. Stacy from Loudoun, VA

    I'd buy this guy a beer and shake his hand.

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  19. Bush's Crusader

    McCain is the only one with enough guts to take out our enemies in North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia.

    With the no abortion policy and a draft, we will have enough solders to continue God's war for our country.

    September 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  20. gbrown2

    ROFL!!!!!!

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  21. Republican for Obama

    She is a Wacho!

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  22. Dean Kent

    I think the media loves to see a fight, or even better, a train wreck! Keeps them all in business.

    I mean, how many 6th grade educated Americans would read about *issues*? Better to report on insults, and perceived insults, and indignation, and feigned indignation, and 'made up stuff'.

    Which brings up the question – whatever happened to real journalists? Well, America... good night, and good luck...

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  23. McCain = Mr. 90%

    She's had her fun.

    Can't we all just forget about Sarah Palin and move the country forward.

    Too much is at stake America to waste any more time on a governor from Alaska who did not matter two weeks ago.

    She is not the story.

    Americans coming together to fix this country is going to be the story.

    Let's get Obama elected for blue collar America!

    Get r' done!

    Obama/Biden '08!

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  24. mama4obama

    Awesome...the typically quite man should speak out some more. Its also nice to see that I'm not the only one terrified by the thought of either McCain or Palin running the White House. .....EEBGEEBEE'S anyone?

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  25. Joshua College Station Texas

    Sarah who? Let's get back to Obama-McCain.

    September 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
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