April 14th, 2009
05:59 PM ET
6 years ago

Did McCain snub Palin on Leno?

McCain left off Palin's name on his list of future GOP leaders.
McCain left off Palin's name on his list of future GOP leaders.

(CNN) - Did John McCain snub Sarah Palin during an appearance Monday on NBC's The Tonight Show?

That's what some pro-Palin bloggers and other political observers claim after the former GOP presidential candidate left out his former running mate when naming five governors who he thought were in position to lead the Republican Party.

"We have, I'm happy to say, a lot of voices out there," McCain told host Jay Leno before listing Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Utah Gov. John Huntsman, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, and Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

"There are a lot of governors out there who are young and dynamic," said the Arizona senator.

McCain then quickly joked, "I've left out somebody's name and I'm going to hear about it."


Criticism of McCain's comments are particularly fierce at TeamSarah.org, a blogging Web site for Palin supporters.

"McCain, who screwed up his campaign by not voting against the bailout, can't mention Sarah's name on Leno? It hurts the party and it makes him look bad by dissing her a 3rd time," wrote one blogger. "Maybe it's a good thing he didn't become president."

McCain has said in previous interviews it is too early to say whether he will support Palin should the Alaska governor run for president in 2012. His daughter Meghan made similar comments on CNN's No Bias, No Bull last week.  (Video below)

McCain has also praised Palin since Election Day, saying late last year of the Alaska governor, "It's one of the great pleasures I've had to get to know her and her family, and I think she has a very bright future in a leadership position in the Republican Party."


Filed under: John McCain • Sarah Palin
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Pa for Obama

    Palin was one of MANY reasons McCain lost. It was a cynical VP Pick and McCain knew she wasn't qualified to be president or VP whn he picked her.

    April 14, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  2. Laughing at Palin

    That's Ok let Palin run for president in 2012 she will just make a fool out of herself again and the Republican Party ... remember she has foreign relation b/c she can see Russia from her house.

    I mean c'mon lets face it Palin and her family are only famous b/c she TRIED to run as VP, other than that we never would have known who she was. Stay in Alaska with your family that likes to rob houses.

    April 14, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  3. faulpelz

    Palin will make a great president, but I don't for which country I want to wish her onto for leadership. Maybe Afghanistan.

    April 14, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  4. italiangerry

    Palin certainly contributed to McCain's defeat, but she was hardly the only cause. Most important was his lack of a real grasp of the issues, especially the economy, plus a growing sense that his character and psychological makeup were slightly unstable. Much of the time he just didn't seem to me like a guy in control of himself.

    April 14, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  5. Minnesotan

    McCain was right to vote for the bailouts. Even though it was against his fundamental beliefs he is old enough to have remembered how Hoover threw us into a Depression by not throwing money into our economy at a very crucial time. Too bad the GOP just can't budge on their "no taxes" "no bailout" mantra.

    April 14, 2009 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  6. Rob Johnson

    John McCain knows better than any of us that Sarah Palin is not fit to serve as President. I'm sure he saw things behind the scenes that were far worse than her public blunders.

    It's a shame he ever tarnished his legacy by affiliating himself with her.

    On the other hand, he is single-handedly responsible for making Palin a national political figure, so maybe he deserves a tarnished legacy.

    April 14, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  7. street smart

    Mc Cain & company picked Sarah Palin as his running mate because they felt they needed a woman on the ticket so people would think the Republican Party were as progressive as the Dems. She's good looking and has great charisma and knows how to create great camera chemistry from all her years as a beauty contestant. In the end virtually all swing voters saw her as noting more than window dressing for the same old tired conservative rhetoric that has ruined this country, Hey Sarah, its over darlin' I heard theres some vacancies on Hef's Girls Next Door show. You failed your audition as VP, tell Hef you need a new career change so you can do what you do best. Look pretty, flirt and wink into the camera.

    April 14, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  8. Syndi

    Hold on a sec. Is this the same McCain that said in an interview during the campaign that Sarah was the best VP candidate "EVER"? Hmmm, so does that mean that Mr. McCain flat out lied to the American people? Win by any means necessary John?

    April 14, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  9. WHAT??

    LOL so Palin can be vice president but cant lead the republican party? That doesnt even make sense.

    April 14, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  10. John B.

    It should really tell you something when your former running mate will not mention your name in a list of GOP governors ready to lead the party.
    Like, your not qualified and the only reason that you were added to the ticket is because the GOP hoped to gain women voters that previously supported Clinton. And for those that think the liberal media is out to get her, read between the lines. or should I just spell it out, she is NOT Qualified. Of all the best and brightest women in the GOP, the best they could do is Sarah Palin?

    April 14, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  11. Glenn

    Who cares. Palin was forced onto McCain because the Republicans thought that by having a female VP they would gain the female vote because Obama didn't pick Clinton as his running mate. Why is Palin still news? The election is over and yes the fact is that there are many Republican governors out there much more qualified than Palin.

    April 14, 2009 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  12. JWH

    John...if you had picked ANY of them, this moderate independent would have voted for you. If you had picked Tim, I might have even got off my butt and campaigned for you. Instead, you you chose "her" and i had to campaign against you, just to keep her away from the White House.

    Sorry pal.

    April 14, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  13. Steve in CT

    The McCain camp brought Palin in and then threw her to the sharks. Granted she has more enemys than you can count but that's expected when a governor tries to fight a polital system as corrupt as Alaska has had for decades. If people would stop the mindless shark feeding frenzy and look at the progress made by Governor Palin while dodging attacks of the corrupt from both parties In Alaska and accept Alaska has a different culture than more populated states she would be a contender. Of course she's a target. So was Teddy Roosevelt who went on to be one of the best leaders this country has ever had.

    April 14, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  14. Stacy

    McCain screwed up his election run and now as before, he cannot admit fault, so he is blaming someone else. I'm starting to be sorry that I voted for the old fart. Palin was a gift that he should have appreciated and used, right.

    April 14, 2009 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  15. lil bucca

    Seems as though anyone in the public eye can't say anything without someone finding fault in it. Sarah Palin is a very intelligent upcoming political figure. Her rise to governor of Alaska demonstrates that. John McCain is, has been and will go down in history as a true American hero, good representative for Arizona (whether you agree with all of his positions, which I don't) and a valued citizen of the U.S.
    I would suggest to all of the ultra-sensitive people that take every comment made by public figures to turn off their TVs, radioes and computers and take a very long nap.

    April 14, 2009 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  16. GetTheFacts

    She WASN'T his first choice as running-mate, why would he support her now?! And since Gov. Palin is doing such a "wonderful" job in Alaska, perhaps all who support her should move there...and then quickly secede. Please. But let us re-locate all the wolves, polar bears, and other innocent wildlife before you do.

    April 14, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  17. Debi

    Why would McCain endorse Palin or anyone else? God only knows what will happen between now and 2012. He is running for re-election in Arizona and needs to focus on his candidacy.

    I do not blame McCain for not mentioning whether he would endorse Palin. She may not even be viable (just like Jindal or Pawlenty) in 2012.

    Obama proves that you never know which unknown is waiting off stage.

    I think they are all putting the cart before the horse.

    April 14, 2009 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  18. Drew in ATL

    Obama was right when he criticized McCain's judgement and McCain bolstered this by his pick of Palin. To think that there are a good number of people still hoping she runs for 2012 is mind-boggling. Are you serious??? The biggest detriment to the GOP is it's base. LOL

    April 14, 2009 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  19. David Pietrzyk

    McCain had no chance of winning no matter who he picked to be his running mate. He was to close to Obama on many issues. How so many can make comments about the intelligence of Sarah is confusing. I've heard Biden make so many stupid remarks that if he were a Republican the late night comedians would never stop going after him. I've also heard Obama speak off the cuff and sound very ignorant. Mccain showed his lack of class by not even mentioning Sarah as a possibilty for President. I was not for McCain but simply against Obama. If my choice was between Obama or Sarah I would pick Sarah.

    April 14, 2009 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  20. Independent voter

    I agree with John McCain. A leader like Mitt Romney for example would be a great choice to lead America out of this recession. Romney is definitely a front runner in 2012. Whereas Palin has to much going on to effectively campaign for the presidency in 4 years.

    Romney/Jindal 2012!!!

    April 14, 2009 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  21. Deb n Texas

    McCain, I find is just downright confusing. He forgets what he is for or has been for and what he is against and who. He changes with the wind. This is what the country could have gotten! Could you believe that?

    April 14, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  22. orville

    SP is a waste of everybody's time. She is no more qualified for national office than the man on the moon! heaven help us if the voters find some way to make her a legitimate contender!...She lacks intelligence ( for national office), is shallow, and is a total reactionary!

    April 14, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  23. innev

    Of course he left her out; he doesn't think she is qualified to run for POTUS! It's obvious, but until he actually says it, the media will not shut up about it. They need to let it go and move on.

    April 14, 2009 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  24. Brown

    I tell you that really kills his credibility. She was good enough at the time when he ran for President, why not now.?? Boy did she get played. Glad I'm a Dem but the reality is in the political arena, anything goes. And it doesn't matter which political party you support. They all have their soap opera's. Just stay tuned.

    April 14, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  25. KPM

    I wasn't a McCain Palin supporter at all, but his use of her to capture Hillary votes were all wrong. I am sorry she lacked the judgement to understand she had no place in the race towards the White House.

    McCain use to be the man when he ran against Bush, but now he's too old!

    I wouldn't be shocked to learn he choose his daughter Megan as VP candidate.

    April 14, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
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