January 25th, 2009
01:30 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain: I won't be a 'rubber stamp' for Obama

McCain says his new role after a bruising election is that of loyal opposition.

McCain says his new role after a bruising election is that of loyal opposition.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. John McCain, who faced a long, bruising campaign against President Obama, has taken on a new role in the Obama administration: "Loyal opposition."

McCain defined his role as, "[To] help and work together where I can, and stand up for the principles and the party and the philosophy that I campaigned on and have stood for for many years," to Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday.

McCain, who has long championed bipartisanship in Washington, said while it's important for Americans to come together, it doesn't mean "that as the loyal opposition that I or my party will be a rubber stamp."

But the former Republican presidential candidate said he can use his experience to help Obama with a long-standing problem besides the economy.

"I think I can help in devising a strategy for Afghanistan. The hard truth is that the Afghan war has deteriorated," he said.

McCain's comments come amid recent U.S. bombings targeting al Qaeda in the Waziristan area of Pakistan on the border with Afghanistan. The rocky terrain has long been seen as a haven for Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda operatives.

soundoff (395 Responses)
  1. Debbie Boyd

    the former Republican presidential candidate said he can use his experience to help Obama with a long-standing problem besides the economy.... like he will even talk to you about ANYTHING.. he has his own peeps...

    January 25, 2009 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  2. grandad

    Just a message for McCain from a Republican who voted Democratic for the first time last year:

    Just remember this. Most of the country is trending blue, and will continue to do so if you keep the Republican Party on the same course. The people have spoken and we do NOT care for the extremist right wing ideology.

    January 25, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. John

    This is the same man who picked Palin for VP. How can anyone trust his judgment or take him seriously on anything? Yes, he's been through a lot in the past and has done some things that one could consider heroic, but unfortunately, that does not add any more weight to his opinion than those of any of Obama's other advisers. And where was McCain for last eight years? I'm sure the Bush administration would've surely benefited from his new found wisdom.

    January 25, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  4. Leigh

    Finally! Someone with the conviction to say no! Maybe these next 4 years will not be so bad and I do hope they go by in the blink of an eye.

    Good luck to you, Sen. McCain. A true patriot who serves to the best of his ability and does what's right for America.

    January 25, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  5. Neal

    The thing about Jon McCain is that he was never president material, except perhaps a brief period in 1999-2000. And he is ok when he is not trying to make himself seem presidential.

    January 25, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  6. Cathy

    Of course he won't rubber stamp Obama's programs. This idiot
    used all he had for Bush's failed programs, he wouldn't know what
    to do with anything that actually works.

    January 25, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  7. Ernie in LA

    World peace is a dream. You have to remember that the middle east is still living in the stone ages. They are heatherns that do not value their life nor anyone else's. They do not want peace. It is like trying to feed Africa, we are wasting our time. We would have to hold their hand until the end of time. We need to worry about America before we go down the drain.

    January 25, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  8. Steven

    I hear the GOP does not like the current plan, but what I don't understand is it seems like their plans/perspectives have gotten us into this mess. So why would anyone think that after 8 years of financial mismanagement, the GOP all of a sudden has found the right path.

    Just remember: S&P 500 1250 in Jan 2001. S&P 500 was 850 in Jan 2009.

    Just remember: How much the national deficit climbed during the time frame 2001 to 2009.

    No opinion, just the facts of performance.

    January 25, 2009 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  9. Gloria

    McCain defined his role as, "[To] help and work together where I can, and stand up for the principles and the party and the philosophy that I campaigned on and have stood for for many years," to Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday.

    Yes, we know what McCains campaign principles were and there is no place for them in our hope for a better United States of America.

    McCain, Pelosi, and Reid need to take a long hike.

    January 25, 2009 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  10. RealityCheck

    THANK YOU, Senator McCain! NoONE should be a rubber stamp for Oblahblahblah! That is why we need the CHECKS AND BALANCES

    January 25, 2009 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  11. Nat

    I see ego's are getting bruised in Congress. The President is trying to help the people of this Country and Congress with their 'self importance' is trying to play a game of: We will show him. Congress has done absolutely nothing to help this country throughout this entire crisis, but blame each party, and hold committee hearings to see themselves talk. I'm patiently waiting the day that the American people get sick and tired of those clowns, and we take it back to the Revolutionary, Boston Tea party days. They are really wearing the American public thin with their attempts to show who has the bigger bite. Get on with it Congress, and let's get some things done!

    January 25, 2009 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  12. RealityCheck

    THANK YOU, Senator McCain! NO ONE should be a blank check for Obama. That is why we need CHECKS AND BALANCES. Thank you for looking out fo the AMERICAN CITIZENS!

    January 25, 2009 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  13. Emma, San Jose

    None of us expected him to be a rubber stamp for Obama. We have
    figured that out without him reminding us. The question to McCain should be, "What are you going to do to improve US problems?" We voted against your way at the general election.

    January 25, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  14. Christian

    When John Kerry voted against Bush policies no one made news of it.

    Why is it that the media allows only conservatives to remain relevant after they've LOST?

    January 25, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  15. Kenneth M. of Flushing Queens

    Nobody asked you to be a rubber stamp. Just get out of the way. It would be nice to have GOP buy in but we dont need it. The GOP should oppose this package if it goes agains their grain. That is the right thing fo them to do. But if it works it will be the end of them, if not it will be the beginning of them. They owe it to their party to do what they think is right. Only problem is as of now they are batting 200 ou of 1000. or 20%.

    January 25, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  16. earle,florida

    Re: Typo Keating "5" oops!

    January 25, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  17. Hillary

    I guess after 8 years of rubber stamping for Bush, McCain could use a change.

    January 25, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  18. Ray Fisher

    I question whenever any Republican uses the term "Principles" because they apparently get it confused within the political arena. The Republican "Principles" of old, responsibility, fiscal integrity, moral fiber have given way to new "Principles" of irresponsible behavior, borrow and spend fiscal policy , and unbridled greed via nobody minding the store actions throughout America. Between no-bid contracts, unaccountable bailouts, stomping the Constitution and cutting veterans benefits during wartime they have given new meaning to the term "Irresponsible". As a former Reagan Republican, I am appalled at how they have acted from condemning private property for corporate development, failing to present a national budget to shaninigans in public restrooms. It is most certainly not my father's Republican Party!!!

    January 25, 2009 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  19. greg

    pleASE.. if you do not , , you might have an accident... from one of the oss members,, beware, america,, the boots will be walking amongst your towns and cities,,, HEIL OBAMA,, if not ,, try and hide for a while... then , the real revolution will take place,,,,,,, stop the conflicts accross the ocean,, who cares, about the iraqis, affies,, et al,, america needs saving,,, b4 ,, we fall at the feet of a false god

    January 25, 2009 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  20. Needed to be said

    ....duh?

    January 25, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  21. Sue

    I guess the republicans need a dummy to lead in opposition. I would argue that is John Boehner, but it looks like Mccain wants that role back. This is good for democracy, but they will soon realize that they are simply acting out of spite... that's all – they will lose support real fast.

    January 25, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  22. curtis

    Which priciples and philoshophies? They changed with the wind over the past few years.

    January 25, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  23. Ron in Raleigh

    I find the term "loyal opposition" quite quaint. If I am not mistaken, I think this is the same term used in the old movie "The Mouse that Roared" to depict the minority party of the Grand Duchey of Fenwick.

    January 25, 2009 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  24. David U

    I feel like the old maverick is coming back. Not the one in the recent campaign, I'm talking about the one that stood up to his party but also stood by his beliefs, the one that I would have voted for back in 2000 if W. didn't get the nod, the one that truely crossed party lines and spoke to the vast majority of us that are in or just a little left or right of the middle. I voted Obama and believe in him, but I also like checks and balances and right now since the numbers won't do it I want McCain to take charge, have a big voice, and hopefully remake the republican party so that if they ever do get back in power I won't have to fear for my countries future.

    January 25, 2009 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  25. Mr X

    I always know John Mc Cain was a snake only waiting for the oppertunity to strike but i wish him the best because he is a snake without venum as was proven in the campaign when he decided to cancell his campaign

    January 25, 2009 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
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