February 20th, 2014
10:48 PM ET
5 months ago

McCain: If election were tomorrow, Clinton would be president

(CNN) – Sen. John McCain predicted if voters headed to the polls for the 2016 elections tomorrow, Hillary Clinton would be most likely be elected president - though the former secretary of state wouldn't be his pick.

Asked by CNN's Piers Morgan on Thursday about 2012 Republican presidential candidate and Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann's recent assessment that America isn't ready for a female president, McCain said they have a different reading on the current political landscape.

"I would bet, my friend, as much as I hate to admit it, that right now – this is why we have campaigns – but right now, if the election were tomorrow, Hillary Clinton would most likely be the president of the United States," the Arizona Republican said.

"She wouldn't be my candidate," he added, but pointed to growth in the number of women in the Congress and state officials as evidence to the contrary of Bachmann's judgment.

Clinton has yet to announce that she's running for president in 2016, but that hasn't stopped Republicans from preemptively attacking her record in preparation for another Clinton White House bid.

Bachmann told syndicated columnist Cal Thomas that a lot of people “aren’t ready” for a woman to be president when asked about Clinton’s appeal as potentially the first female commander in chief.

“I think there was a cachet about having an African-American president because of guilt," she told Thomas. “People don’t hold guilt for a woman...I don’t think there is a pent-up desire (for a woman president.)"

A CNN/ORC poll conducted from January 31 through February 2 showed Clinton as the overwhelming favorite as Democrats' choice for a 2016 presidential nominee. That same poll shows Clinton ahead of potential Republican White House contenders like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, has said he won't launch another bid for the White House but is considering running for a sixth term in the Senate.

CNN's Mary Grace Lucas contributed to this report.

Watch Piers Morgan Live weeknights 9 p.m. ET. For the latest from Piers Morgan click here.

soundoff (364 Responses)
  1. Demigod Vadik, CA

    Elections could be held tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, or next decade...

    ...Clinton would still win...

    February 21, 2014 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  2. mike

    John McCain is now in the news every week. Sometimes 2 or 3 stories a week. Since most of the conservative world now knows he is a dyed in the wool true blue liberal, it makes you wonder if the liberal media is pushing him as a candidate against Hillary. He'd lose, and that's what they want is a Hillary victory.

    February 21, 2014 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  3. Daniel

    After the Jewish Lobby gave her the Jew York Senate Seat they put her into the State Department. Ben Ghazi was her big BLUNDER and she LIED to cover it up. Imagine what damages she could do as President and how much LIES she will tell US The Paople... Great expectations? Not so much.

    February 21, 2014 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  4. Jack 2

    A lot can happen before the end of 2016. i wouldn't specualte too much.

    February 21, 2014 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. Daniel

    After the Jewish Lobby gave her the Jew York Senate Seat they put her into the State Department. Ben Ghazi was her big BLUNDER and she LIED to cover it up. Imagine what damages she could do as President and how much LIES she will tell US The People... Great expectations? Not so much.

    February 21, 2014 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  6. Crocker

    It's not that we aren't ready for a woman president. We are simply not ready for someone of Billary's credentials to become one. She has way too many skeletons in her closet; a closet that the mainstream media is too cowardly to open.

    February 21, 2014 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  7. jackm7

    Who the h...l is John McCaiin? Who cares what he thinks. He could jinx the whole thing!!!

    February 21, 2014 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  8. stanton allaben

    Only the Republicans, who have a history of not giving women little credit for much of anything, don't believe the country is ready for a female President. I think it was ready before it was ready for a black President.

    February 21, 2014 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. Shane

    Well, he's right. Do you currently see a Republican who would win against Hillary? Nope! Christie was their front runner, and he's clearly toast.

    February 21, 2014 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  10. Jcraw

    McCain needs to go away! I doubt U.S. is ready for a female president espeically Hillary. Do we really want the Clintons in the White House again? We don't need a professional politican – we need a people's president.

    February 21, 2014 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  11. Daniel

    The Jewish Lobby made her New York Senator then they gave her the State Department. Ben Ghazi was her big BLUNDER and her LIES to cover it up is a warning that she is NOT QUALIFIED to be President. She could not protect her Ambassador- how could she protect our country?

    February 21, 2014 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  12. Jessica McGwin

    well Hillary has a strategy team. No doubt the smartest in the world. I am an idiot girlfriend.

    February 21, 2014 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  13. stuman

    That old dynosaur just babbles senslessly about little of nothing.

    February 21, 2014 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  14. Dee

    and they said America wasn't ready for a Black President.. but Obama won TWICE! Hillary has it in the bag! Continue the Obama agenda! 2016 CLINTON!

    February 21, 2014 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. Bobby Leon

    Mysteriously off the list was Marco Rubio...wonder why they left him off the list...because he will be the winner!

    February 21, 2014 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  16. Simplefaith

    The only Republican that would get in as President is Colon Powell. He is ashamed of his Republican Party. if he ran for President as an Independent, I would vote for him.

    February 21, 2014 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  17. Bob

    Remember that Hillary also supposedly had it in the bag as one of the most well-known Democrats when she lost the nomination to a relatively unknown Senator from Illinois.

    February 21, 2014 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  18. tet1953

    It won't be any different in November 2016, John. Actually I am not a big Hillary fan myself, but I'd rather have her than any GOP.

    February 21, 2014 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  19. Kathy Bell

    Best way to scare the crap out of a Republican is just say the word Hillary. It's hilarious. Put on your big boy and big girl pants and grow up!! Our society is ready for a woman POTUS, unbelievable we haven't had one yet. If you're going to blame Hillary for Benghazi then let's blame Bush and Rice for 9/11 as well. They had clear warning. Hillary, boo!! Scared you:)

    February 21, 2014 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  20. Joe

    Can't imagine Hillary going up against Putin. Images of ailing FDR and Stalin at Yalta. Image does mean a whole lot.

    February 21, 2014 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  21. Bobby Leon

    Rubio will win why?
    1. More moderate than rest of the Republican bunch.
    2. Hispanic background will bring in Hispanic voters.
    3. Younger than the normal gray hairs the Repubs. usually run.
    4. Hillary lost the primary she was in against Obama..recent history has never rewarded second time runners with the White House.
    5. Roman Catholic will bring in Christain voters.
    6. People will start to qyuestion why we seem to go with Bushes or Clintons as President...aren't there more people qualified to run the country other than these two families? Seems conspiratory to some.
    7. We will be beaten to death with domstic quabbles and by the time Obama is near end of office people will swing conservative.
    8. Why didn't Romney pick Rubio as Vice to pick up Hispanic votes and diversity? Beacause Rubio is set to be the next pres..that's why.

    February 21, 2014 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Steve

    McCain was just being real by what he said. He sees the currant state of the GOP and knows what they do not have to beat Hillary Clinton

    February 21, 2014 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  23. Crashman

    I think it's funny that Michelle Bachmann says that America is not ready for a female president, but she herself ran in 2012 saying that it was. So it's ready for her but not Hillary? LOL!!!!!

    February 21, 2014 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  24. BO

    McCain spent to much time in Hanoi Hilton. He's gone totally nutz.

    February 21, 2014 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  25. Common Sense

    You know, I would vote for a horse if said horse had moral and spiritual courage to do the right thing for this country without thinking of politics.....Where can America find someone, man or woman, who will do the right things for us, regardless of what it costs politically??? Until we can answer that question, we will continue to have candidates from both parties whose only qualification is they want to be president, regardless of how much of their soul it may cost them.........

    February 21, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
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