NASHVILLE, Tennessee (CNN) – During a town hall meeting on Monday afternoon in the historical home of the Grand Ole Opry, John McCain attacked Barack Obama on no less than six different topics, ranging from the Illinois senator’s single visit to Iraq in early 2006 to not supporting the nominations of Supreme Court justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito.
However, McCain had nothing but kind words for Hillary Clinton whose candidacy has been declared all but dead.
“I have known Senator Clinton, I admire her and I respect her,” said McCain in response to a questioner who noted that Clinton is still in the race. “She has inspired generations of American women to believe that they can reach the highest office in this nation.”
“I admire the campaign that she has run, she deserves a great deal of credit,” he added. “A few of us who have been around politics for a while learned a lesson way back in 1992 that you better never count a Clinton out of any race.”
McCain said that they have had their differences on the Senate floor, but drew applause from the Nashville crowd for emphasizing his respect for Clinton.
Clinton has insisted that if she fails to win the Democratic nomination, she would work with Obama to unite the party ahead of November’s election. But there is no doubt that if her campaign fails, McCain will – and may already – be targeting her white, working class and older voters Obama has had trouble winning over.