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. Stacy from Leesburg, VA

    The laws of unintended consequences have really plagued Senator McCain. His ‘Hail Mary’ pass in the Presidential election will now forever link him to Alaska’s former Governor as she builds her radical right support for a run in 2012. Furthermore, his embrace of these principles not only endanger his political future, but are leading the GOP to a marginalized regional party now run by Neoconservatives. This is ironic because Senator McCain was supposed to be the true “moderate” of the party and was deemed “Maverick”, but in the end the moderates are the ones being shown the door in this increasingly regressive GOP. He is a good man with good intentions, but the road to Hades is paved with those intentions.

    September 3, 2009 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  2. Peter in SML

    "...Would support President Obama...and....thinks the people are disappointed that they are not working together more (DEMs and GOP...?)

    That's the McCain I would have voted for !!!

    Welcome back to the real world Senator !!

    September 3, 2009 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  3. Fred the Moderate

    His last statement on working together is the best words I think I have ever heard come out of his mouth.

    And we should be!

    September 3, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  4. johnvailati

    Jim McCain, shoots from the "hip" chosing Pallenas a running mate
    a major mistake, could you see him as President? His judgement
    and his temperment are not in control, he reacts and does not think
    through his decesion, may work in sports but not as a world leader.

    September 3, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  5. Ted

    Why does Mccain think that Sarah the quitter should check in with him about her decision to quit as governor? These egomaniacs really think the world revolves around them. NEWS FLASH no one cares about McCain or Palin anymore other than themselves.

    So McSame, how come you are not working with Obama on healthcare? How come you are on the fence with the rest of the rightwingnuts in the senate watching the whole thing crash and burn? Maybe your federally subsidized socialist-like healthcare should be taken away from all members of congress for a while and you can see how it is like, since you have had federal healthcare since birth.

    Get over yourself – become actively bi-partisan. Be a leader. HA!!

    September 3, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  6. Kevin in Ohio

    Any health care plan that fails to include tort reform and/or fails to guarantee 100% my right to keep my present insurance down the road (and not force me in to a "Public Option") will be defeated. The present plans include neither of these. The president needs to LISTEN to the American people before he speaks.

    September 3, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  7. Sara

    This is the John McCain I know and love. Open-minded and unreactionary. Where was this John McCain during the election?

    September 3, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  8. Beatrice

    My opinion of John Mc Cain went down since he has associated himself with Sara Palin politically. I cannot understand that he wanted to have someone who is not qualified at the white house. His action during the election showed someone who choose to do whatever it took to win. The consequences could have been catastrophic, and I don't think he had a clue, even today! Mc Cain is not in touch with the reality of the everyday life of the Americans.

    September 3, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  9. New Age Democrat

    The love fest with Palin by CNN is past the point of ridiculous. I truly believe that the only reason they post these articles are for the extreme left who only know how spew hatred. It's sad and pathetic and causing irreversible damage to the Democrat party.

    September 3, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  10. Az Senior

    And "not working together more" of course, is Obama's fault.

    September 3, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  11. Torin from Georgia

    I have to give John McCain much credit for sticking up for President Obama at a town hall meeting on health care recently. Despite the boos and cat calls by his own constituents, Senator MCain tried to calm a roudy crowd. Senator MCain said that he and the President have philosphical differences on health care but denouced the name calling and labeling used a few at the town hall meeting.

    Although I have many differences with Senator McCain's politics, it is gratifying to see that he can still exhibit integrity and courage in defending the President when most other Republican politicans remain silent.

    September 3, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  12. Kim in mpls

    When will they ever learn. Is McCain going to pull a Grassley?

    September 3, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  13. sifto77

    hopefully, Obama is finally listening to McCain–his own party has failed miserably with the American people and caring what they want. Too bad there were so many people voting on raw emotion. The left got their historical President but forgot to train him for the job. His vision of leadership appears to be dictatorship which is nor working with independent Americans.

    September 3, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  14. Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon

    Sen McCain, Sarah Palin IS YOUR LEGACY.

    So sorry.

    September 3, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  15. Scott, Tucson

    If McCain wants to work with Obama, he better hurry the guy has less than 3 1/2 years left before he's ousted from the White House.

    September 3, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  16. JR

    One thing you can depend on from Old John is that if you don't like what he says, wait a few minutes and he'll say the opposite.

    September 3, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  17. Shane

    McCain needs to admit it that he choose the craziest person on earth to be his running mate. I actually feel sorry for McCain – SP needs to be in a straight jacket and put in the mental ward now not later.

    September 3, 2009 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  18. Steve-O

    John, what was it your aides told you about Sarah Palin? "High risk / high reward"? How's that decision working out for you?

    September 3, 2009 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  19. Sgt. USMC

    Perhaps the smartest comment I have ever heard McCain speak. He hit it on the nail when he said "I think the disappointment a lot of Americans display is that we are not working together more." I say he is starting to come around and realizes how childish the right has been when it comes to health care. I hope he is not just saying what the crowd wants to hear and is sincere enough to listen to what President Obama has to say. I think it's about time we reform health care so we can afford to have stay at home moms, have a little extra to put away for our children's future. Health care reform won't solve everything but it will be one less thing bringing our economy down. HEALTH CARE REFORM NOW!!!

    September 3, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  20. Bates

    Wasn't Obama to the be the great unifier. He has done anything yet but scare the elderly on heathcare and solidify the States as a debtor nation. I find it humorous all the outrage over Obama speaking at schools. I don't agree with Obama on much but he is the President. In case you don't know what all the histeria about him speaking at the schools is about- that is trust. People do not trust him – scary.

    September 3, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  21. Richie

    Who cares? Geezer lost. Dingbat quit.

    September 3, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  22. Obamalism

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

    Wrong, we're disappointed that you 'try' to work with the other side no matter how moronic and un-american the idea is.

    Look at the size and scope of the govt just a hundred years ago...look at it now. Re-read the constitution and tell me you don't see a problem.

    Defence, commerce...money (gave that up to the privately owned fed).

    Funny how Energy, Education, Health Care, Automobiles, Banking aren't there (nope, no czars either!). Which means, by default, that they belong to the states. End of story.

    September 3, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  23. JimS.

    John, if Repubs and Dems aren't working together more, maybe you should tell your party's members to learn another word besides "NO" !!

    September 3, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  24. Joe

    Yes, John McCain is right about one point. We Americans certainly ARE DISAPPOINTED in our elected officials and their lack of ability to work together. They still act as if the Democrats and Republicans are its own football team and they constantly bickering/battling against each other. That's never gonna resolve issues!!! They need to WORK TOGETHER as a Team if anything is gonna happen and come to some common ground!

    September 3, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  25. Ted Tartaglia

    Let's see what McCain does. Talk is cheap; action speaks louder than words. I doubt he will break with the party of NO and support healthcare reform.

    September 3, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
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