January 23rd, 2009
02:22 PM ET
4 years ago

McCain says he and Palin plan to meet this month


Watch McCain discuss his relationship with Palin.

(CNN) - Despite the post-election battle between Sarah Palin and John McCain's campaign advisors, the former Republican presidential candidate told CNN’s Larry King both members of the GOP ticket remain “very close.”

McCain — who has been edging his way back into the spotlight Palin never quite left - dismissed questions over his running mate’s criticism of his campaign team. “Listen, I think the world of Governor Palin, her husband Todd, her family, I'm honored that she would run with me,” he said in an interview Thursday.

“And look, whenever there is a losing campaign there is always a little bit of back and forth, and it happens post-mortem. I am so grateful to have her as a friend, and I believe that she represents a lot to the Republican Party in the future. I think she has a big role to play.”

Palin and senior McCain aides, many of them anonymous, have traded criticism since the Republican ticket’s defeat.

Last month, the Alaska governor told Human Events that following the campaign’s media strategy was her biggest regret of the race. “I was not allowed to do very many interviews, and the interviews that I did were not necessarily those I would have chosen,” she said. “But I was so thankful to have the opportunity to run with John McCain that I was not going to argue with the strategy decisions that some of his people were making regarding the media contacts...if I would have been in charge, I would have wanted to speak to more reporters, because that’s how you get your message out to the electorate.”

The Arizona senator would not tell King Thursday whether he was personally stung by Palin’s criticism of his top aides. “Look, we're very close friends, and I talk to her all the time and look forward to seeing her, I think, in a week or so,” he said. “We're very close.”

McCain also side-stepped the question of whether he’d ever raised those comments with her. “Oh - these things always happen in campaigns,” he said. “She has my respect and my affection and that's undying.”

Last month, he told an interviewer Sarah Palin could not necessarily count on his support his former running mate if she chose to run for president.

"I can't say something like that. We've got some great other young governors,” he told ABC then. “I think you're going to see the governors assume a greater leadership role in our Republican Party," he said, citing Governors Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and Jon Huntsman of Utah.

“...Have no doubt of my admiration and respect for her and my view of her viability, but at this stage, again … my corpse is still warm, you know?"

Filed under: John McCain • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (674 Responses)
  1. Brenda

    McCain is saying what he is supposed to say ... rise above the fray ... Palin is done! FINISHED!

    January 23, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  2. Trust

    And who cares if they meet she is still extremely stupid.

    January 23, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  3. Annie

    At least with the inauguration, we had count them at least two Palin Free news days. Why is a loser VP nominee still in the news? Most people can't even name VP candidates from the past that have lost. Govern Alaska Palin, your people are struggling in their villages and you are not paying attention to your job. Do your job as governor, instead of your narcissistic press pandering.

    January 23, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. John

    McCain needs to shut up and go away. He does not represent the Republican Party's ideals, ethics, or values. His campaign was weak at best. He pulls punches while up against the ropes, and offers no real leadership, politically or otherwise. I respect his service and life story, but its time he accepts the fact that the Young Republicans have taken over Party leadership.

    January 23, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  5. Angie

    Hey john we all know you regret picking that pitbull in lipstick (her words not mine) as a running mate. When she opened her mouth and showed the world her volcabulary was that of a 10 year old, I'm sure that is when you and the gop thought what the he!!. It's over but the idiot won't go away. When you talk or see her PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE tell her she needs MORE education and that while she was making fun of the experience President Obama had as a community orginizer, it served him well. Also tell her that she shouldn't be PALING AROUND WITH DRUG DEALERS that WON'T serve her well.

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  6. Den

    Since when is the ALASKA national guard under some other state. The language used by the liberals shows their level of intellegence

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  7. tony


    Please, keep on repeating these words "Sarah Palin, the Republican presidential candidate for 2012." The liberals support your plan 100%. They are not the only ones. Tina Fey also backs your plan. She will have another career year in 2012.

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  8. Mark

    Im suprised the liberal media wasnt talking about Palin on inauguration day. The way things are looking now i dont think the obambots will stay loyal. Can the media carry him next time?

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  9. Karen

    Sarah just needs to fade away...Her 15 minutes of fame are long over....

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  10. Michael

    Well at least SNL will have plenty of material for the next ten years. Go Palin! LOL.

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  11. Concerned in MA

    Chris January 22nd, 2009 10:26 pm ET

    Note to CNN. Elections were over on Nov 4th, 2008 and Mr. Obama won in a landslide. He was inaugurated on the 20th of January, 2009. Sarah who?


    Dear Chris,

    A landslide is defined as one candidate getting 60% or better of the POPULAR vote.

    Your man didn't quite muster 53%, and that's far from a landslide.

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. Tom in S.A.

    All you Palin bashers need to look at your own states. I'll bet the majority of you are in blue states with huge deficits, crying for stimulus money because your democratic gov't doesn't know how to govern, yet you keep voting them in. States with highest unemployment happen to be blue, why is that?? Can you explain that to me?

    January 23, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  13. Josuha

    Most of you are such creepy democrats that Im sorry to say I can't stomach you...what sleezes....always jealous ...always negetive...how do you live I think you need to find a job

    January 23, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  14. Bobby

    I agree that she has role to play. She is the dumb blonde only with dark hair.

    January 23, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  15. Tina, NC

    Hillary supporter,

    Sorry but most Independents don't like Palin. She was the very reason that McCain was not able to draw in more Independent voters as the results of the election clearly showed. The only people who like Palin are the small group of Republicans who are part of the so called 'base".

    January 23, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  16. Tenn. Democrat

    I hope Sarah Palin stays around for a long time. The more she stays at the forefront of the Republican Party, the more she will continue to divide them. The partnership between the moral and fiscal conservatives has always been very delicate, and this airhead could definitely break it.

    January 23, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  17. SC resident

    That was VERY kind and generous of John McCain to say that.
    In this day and age when it's considered "cool" to tear people down,
    he kept his dignity – and to his credit – came out very gentlemanly.
    Good for him!!!!

    I happen to like Sarah Palin, and thought she did a great job under
    last minute circumstances.

    January 23, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  18. conspiracy, lol

    I think perhaps the GOP hit upon something here.

    Obama appealed to a large percent of the nation.
    Of course the GOP realized that. Wasn't it sorta odd that McCain didn't choose one of the other guys that was running for president to run as VP? Why tarnish the reputation of the real movers and shakers coming up in the party when you could grab Palin? Yea, use her as your sacrifical lamb in 08' and 12'. Then those who are the real future of the party can get down to business in 16'.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  19. a canuck

    It sounds like McCain may be smartening up.....but Palin is still living in her dream world !!!!

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  20. Bruce Barker

    McCain is *so* lost. He began drifting out to sea about 18 – 24 months ago, eventually disappearing over the horizon as someone completely unrecognizable from his past. And he's still out there, blowing with the winds he perceives locally, asleep to the global currents.

    For the first time in my adult life, I actually feel like a member of the citizenry of my own country. I hope McCain's world and those of his contemporaries is really over. I hope that they are just going on out of inertia, like a machine that takes a while to stop running after you unplug it.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  21. LLT

    Since when is tackling a hard policy a "bad" thing. President Obama is goal oriented rather that the Naysayers that put off difficult change in fear that "it is too hard".

    Immigration, social security, health care reform, and the economy are all hard.. things the Republicans hid their heads in the sands and kept their fingers crossed that voters wouldn't notice.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  22. WhoCares?

    Please run in 2012 Sarah.

    Signed – Democratic Party.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  23. Greg Smith, Clifton Heights PA

    All you Democrats and those who voted for Obama are losers, there is a 50-50 chance that Obama will be impeached before his term is up, if we have a terrorist attack because of his doing away of President Bush terrorist policies. The Democratic party represent hatred and much of America is buying it.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  24. Kate in NY

    "She also commands the 49th Missile Defense Battalion, which is the missile defense for all of North America in the Pacific. "

    Really? She commands the 49th Missile Defense Battalion, really?


    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  25. REG in AZ

    There seems two different kind of people interested in Sarah Palin: one, the ultra-conservative who thinks she could be another puppet for them; and two, those who are curious about her and her bazaar notoriety. Neither being a good rational for her pursuing public office. It would be nice if she would just go away quietly.

    January 23, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
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