September 3rd, 2009
02:39 PM ET
5 years ago

McCain addresses Palin, health care on Tonight Show

McCain says he still speaks with Palin 'fairly often.'
McCain says he still speaks with Palin 'fairly often.'

(CNN) – Nearly a year after the presidential race came to an end, it's a subject Arizona Sen. John McCain still can't avoid: Sarah Palin.

Appearing on the Tonight Show With Conan O'Brien Wednesday, the former presidential candidate was asked, as he has been several times before, whether he was shocked Palin chose to resign her post as governor of Alaska two months ago.

"Yeah I was because she didn't call me ahead of time," McCain said to laughter in the audience. "We all have families, we all have challenges, we all have issues in our lives. She did have huge legal debts because of these [ethics] charges."

Despite the at-times public bickering between aides to Palin and McCain since in the aftermath of the campaign's defeat, the Arizona senator insisted he still speaks with his former running mate "fairly often."

"We say hello. We ask about families. I wish her well," he said.

On the issue of health care, McCain indicated he may be willing to support President Obama's reform efforts, depending on what the president says in his joint address to Congress next week.

"I look forward to what he specific proposals are," said McCain. "I think the disappointment a lot of Americans display is that we are not working together more."

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Filed under: John McCain • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Librarian

    Two losers. Next ....

    September 3, 2009 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  2. Old White Virginia Female

    And the next thing you know someone's representatives from Virginia, Eric Cantor, is also giving it serious thought. In a word, bull and you know the rest of the phrase! McCain must think we're stupid.

    September 3, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Thank you CNN for reminding me why I no longer like John McShame. He gave us the Wasilla Whacko.

    September 3, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  4. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Palin was McCain's biggest mistake.... he deserved to lose the election. Palin is a moron.

    September 3, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  5. Right Leaning Independent

    How is Palin still a headline?? Are the Libs and CNN still scared that she is a potential force to be reckoned with?? Enough of her. Lets move on to candidates that have real potential!!

    September 3, 2009 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  6. Big Ed

    What is there to be surprised about? She is a media-hungry, attention seeking, incompetent, seccessionist nut-job.

    September 3, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  7. Sniffit

    Right...and what they DON'T talk about is serious and complicated domestic and foreign policy issues. Shocker...

    "I think the disappointment a lot of Americans display is that we are not working together more."

    First sensible thing that's come out of his mouth since...well...maybe ever.

    September 3, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  8. Duck Fallas

    "I think the disappointment a lot of Americans display is that we are not working together more."

    No kidding, McLoser. Saying no to everything is not cooperation.

    September 3, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  9. suresh

    I do not believe any Republican that says he will support a Democratic president. He first needs to have permission from GOD Rush. I do not think such permission is coming soon.

    September 3, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  10. Lynda/Minnesota

    What a crock of bull this man dishes out ...

    What he SHOULD be doing is begging our forgiveness for dumping Palin on mainsteam America.

    BTW, her *huge financial debt* is being paid for by her donors in the same manner the Clinton's had set up for their legal fees.

    Don't let the truth get in your way there, McCain.

    September 3, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  11. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    McCain talks out of both of his mouths.

    September 3, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  12. Tim, Memphis TN

    The Democrats and Republicans have to start working together before they can work together more. It would be nice if Health Care Reform only included Health Care. Unfortunately, for a bipartisan approach, you first have to start with Campaign Finance Reform (this takes away the loyalty of the Democrats to the Lawyers, and the Loyalty of the Republicans to the Insurance companies), then after these loyalties are removed, you move to Tort Reform which limits the medical malpractice pay-outs/insurance rates, then Health Care Reform would be really easy. Figure the odds...

    September 3, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  13. j

    Repubs basically want to continue as is and let those without money or coverage to die off as they are a drain on social security, medicare, etc. --- Democrats want what works good enough for "all citizens" of most of the other industrialized countries; ie – Canada. It`s time for those who got wealthy after the tax reforms of the late administration to pay up.

    September 3, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  14. Patriot

    McCain speaks about "working together." But it is the Republicans in Congress who don't want to act in a bipartisan manner. President Obama has offered many olive branches to the Repubs, but all they want to do is say no and obstruct. They WANT the President to fail (as Rush Limbaugh has already stated), and they want to protect the profits of the health insurance industry and big pharma.

    If they are so interested in "working together" on health reform, why did they never make this part of their agenda when they were in power? The truth is, they DON'T want healthcare reform, and they don't want President Obama to succeed. Anyone who believes otherwise is either brainwashed, extremely gullible, or living in fantasy land.

    September 3, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  15. Southern Gentleman

    Public Option or nothing, easy as that. Lets see if Obama has the guts to support it. Whats the use of a majority democrats when they are too scared to use it. Lets all go down with the sinking ship, years from now people will say this is where we took a stand and won.

    September 3, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  16. Obama supporter

    Why are we still talking about Palin and why is she relevant. She is a hick from backwoods Alaska. My apologies to people from Alaska.

    September 3, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  17. Nancy - Houston

    A Health Reform bill may not turn out perfect, just as mistakes were made with the stimulus plan, but as we go along, surely these mistakes can be rectified. What I want to see is for our representatives get their hearts and heads together and do the right thing for their constituents, especially those uninsured. The money saved by doing this will have a part in paying for it. That and preventing Medicare fraud. I want them to stop looking out for the interests of the already rich. What does anyone need with so much money and stuff? Ask Mr. McAfee (provider of security on your computer); he sold and gave away all his "stuff," and is happy to get out from under the pressure of keeping up with it.

    With so much going on in the US presently, it is downright depressing. The fires in Calif., the awful story of 11 year old, Jaycee, the wars, joblessness, etc. Like Ann Murray's song...."I Sure Could Use a Little Good News Today."

    September 3, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  18. katiec

    After hearing the horror stories on health care, or should I say lack of health care, watching the insurance companies manipulate coverage for greed and power, the hospitals unlimited spending on expansion, etc and the drug companies being found guilty of fraud and misrepresenting the benefits of their very profitable drugs, how can anyone believe we do not need Health Care Reform??
    We can no longer allow big business run and control our country and us. Look at all the diasters they have created.
    It is time for us to take America back.

    September 3, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  19. Judy Lutzenberger

    I find all the hoopla over a health care public option ridiculous. We already HAVE two public options. Why reinvent the wheel? Why not make health insurance, like car insurance, mandatory, and facilitate those 50 to 65 buying into Medicare on an income-based sliding scale, and those under 50 doing the same with Medicaid? Then just let competition in the marketplace determine which private insurers will flourish, and which will perish. We DO need laws against pre-existing clauses, and some sort of government oversight as the final arbitor when insurance companies deny life-saving modalities based only on bottom-line profits. EVERY solution will have flaws. Shouldn't we concentrate our efforts on fixing what's broken within systems where we can already easily identify and work on correcting those flaws instead of starting all over again?

    September 3, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  20. Truth Teller

    Do the right thing John, support President Obama on his healthcare reform. It would be the right thing to do.

    September 3, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  21. JS007

    I saw Orrin Hatch's moving tribute to Ted Kennedy and was surprised how someone whose policies are so backward could actually be quite intelligent. I suggest to him and Senator McCain that for the sake of their legacies they positively contribute to passing a good health care bill with a public option. I ask these men: Ted Kennedy was lionized for his fight for the common man, how will you gentlemen be remembered? Who are you fighting for? So far it has been the insurance industry, but people can change.

    September 3, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  22. Suzan

    Yes and Palin is not a person to work with anyone but what serves herself best.......I think McCain has just been polite about what he says about Palin, but I think he needs to be honest with American and tell us that he made the biggest mistake in his life when he put her on the ticket to run for VP...he knows it......so why does he continue to deny it.........

    September 3, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  23. Kel

    Good for John McCain. Aside from a couple of things, he has really handled his unsuccessful run for the presidency with class and dignity. Unlike like his former running mate.

    September 3, 2009 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  24. Torture is Not Okay

    Levi said in Vanity Fair that Palin blames John McCain for their defeat and that she really thought she was running for the presidency not merely the VP slot. Sounds like she had plans for your quick demise Sen. McCain.

    September 3, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  25. ttbala

    So Mr. McCain who's fault is it that you are not working together more, the President has gone out of his way to accommodate the Repubs, which is something you cannot say about your last president, and then Repubs have smacked him in the face every chance they get, Mr. McCain the American people are not stupid, so please give up this nonsense about the President not working with you, the REPUBS will not let this President do anything good for the American people and you will stop it if you can, just because if he succeeds you REPUBS are done, finished, history, and you know it, so stop lying you and your group you should be ashamed of yourselves to have Americans deprived of health care just for personal gain.

    September 3, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
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