(CNN) - John McCain has learned his lesson: Don't ever cancel on David Letterman.
Appearing on the late night comedian's show Thursday, the Republican presidential candidate apologized for skipping out on a scheduled visit late last month that Letterman later made the subject of an ongoing joke.
"I screwed up," McCain told Letterman more than once in the interview that's set to air Thursday night.
McCain's appearance on the show comes three weeks to the day after after he raised the ire of the generally mild-mannered host by canceling at the last minute, citing his decision to suspend his presidential campaign because of the financial crisis.
"This doesn't smell right," Letterman said then, during a routine that only half appeared to be a joke. "This is not the way a tested hero behaves. Somebody's putting something in his Metamucil."
Letterman also didn't appear to buy the Arizona senator's explanation for the cancellation then, showing the audience a live feed of McCain preparing for an interview with CBS anchor Katie Couric. After praising McCain's record as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, he said, "This is not the John McCain I know, by God."
Letterman has repeatedly harped on McCain for the missed appearance, noting the Arizona senator's poll numbers appeared to begin to slide right after he skipped out on the show.
"Look at all the conversation I gave you. Including having Mr. Olbermann on," McCain told Letterman Thursday night, referencing the MSNBC liberal talk show host who filled in for him that night.
But Thursday's interview was not all fun and games, as Letterman pressed McCain on Republican VP Sarah Palin's preparedness to lead the country through "the next 9/11 attack.."
"Absolutely" she is, McCain said. "She has inspired Americans. That's the thing we need."
when he says "i screwed up".. does it include him parachuting into washington?
She has inspired Americans to express their inner bigot, perhaps. That's about all she's done.
McCain is running the biggest lies ever in his ads in NC. Glad I already voted today. McCain is a dishonorable old liar.
Put a fork in him.....he's done !
This guy is a F-R-A-U-D and a L-I-A-R.
She has inspired Americans...what Americans? I'm an American and she does'nt inspire me.
Europeans are saying Sarah Palin is and ever won't be a Margareth Thatcher and that she is half baked, whatever that means haha.
a screw up just like the current president
I think I'm starting to gag.
Sarah Palin leading us through any disaster is an absurd McCain fantasy.
Ooops ... looks like Dave did not ask “What does Palin know ?”
That is the big white elephant in the room (of the public).
She didn’t know about the Russian delegation’s visit in Alaska. We don’t care about what she does not know, but what does she know about the Bush, McCain and Obama policies, current general knowledge of the US and the world, economy, foreign policy, health care, immigration and anything in the lower 48 states and the world. What does she really know ?
Hey John–bring Sarah with you-afterall it's really her against Obama-
she's the one who outdrew the both of you in the TV debates by over 10 million people-she's the one who draws the biggest crowds–60,000 in Orlando and 50,000 in Virginia–she's the one who's running for president in 2012 & 2016-she's the one-period.
ha ha ha.. MCFOOL !
The fact that he thinks Sarah Palin is the best Republican in the country to be a 72 year old heart beat away from the presidency is reason enough to disqualify John McCain from consideration as president of this country.
Is that his justification?
She's inspired (red) American and that means she is qualified to lead a country.
Get a clue, McCain!
McCain is a loser. Palin is bad influence on women and children. Same old Bush policies. They're no change agents or mavericks. They're war mongers, divisive people. If they can't win...they'll try to divide the country. Don't listen to them.
She is not qualified period.
She would be impeached for incompetence. She's inexperienced and to top that she's not intelligent. That's the difference between her and obama intelligence.
McCain/Palin is the best joke of the year!
Correction John: you ARE a screwup! God help this man! He has NO HONOR!
Please, Dave, ask John McCain about the "robo-calls" going out to voters in various states, that FALSELY ACCUSE Sen Obama of "having a close relationship with Ayers" and suggesting that Sen. Obama is friendly with terrorists!
Last night, America, McCain LIED to us. He said that "he doesn't care about some washed up terrorist like Ayers" ............BUT.......today his campaign begins those slimy "robo-calls", which CNN reported on today.
Again, I say, PLEASE AMERICA, let's rise up and REJECT the politics of LIES.......HATE.....AND.......FEAR THAT THE REPUBLICANS ESPOUSE!
****************STOP THE HATE****************STOP THE LIES*******
Sarah Palin has inspired me alright – inspired me to vote early in Colorado for Barack Obama. McCaint's erratic behavior during the last two years has also inspired me.... to question his sanity.
Letterman and all the other comedians better wise up!! If McCain/Palin is elected they have four more years they can make jokes. If obama is elected, they are done – no more jokes – that would be racist!
Inspiration – We need inspiration in another 9/11 attack – ARE YOU KIDDING ME? This gets scarier and scarier every time I read another story.
What does 'inspiration' have to do with defending an attack like 9/11? I cannot wait for McCain to lose and retire.