September 25th, 2008
11:00 AM ET
12 years ago

Letterman skewers McCain for cancelling appearance

Letterman wasn't happy McCain canceled on him.

Letterman wasn't happy McCain canceled on him.

(CNN) - David Letterman was not amused Wednesday night John McCain hastily canceled his scheduled appearance on the show.

"This doesn't smell right," Letterman said during a routine that only half appeared to be a joke. "This is not the way a tested hero behaves. Somebody's putting something in his Metamucil."

Watch: Letterman skewers McCain

Shortly before he was slated to be on Letterman's show Wednesday, McCain announced he was suspending his presidential campaign to head back Washington to help ensure Congress passes a version of the economic bailout bill.

But Letterman didn't appear to buy the Arizona senator's explanation, and after praising McCain's record as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, said, "This is not the John McCain I know, by God."

"It makes me believe something is going haywire with the campaign," he said. "Something's gotten to him."

Letterman also took a dig at Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin.

"Here's what you do if you are running a campaign in the middle of an economic crisis and it’s about to crater," Letterman continued. "You go back to Washington, you handle what you need to handle. Don't suspend your campaign. You let your campaign go on shouldered by your vice presidential nominee...or is that really a good thing to do? See what I am saying?"

Speaking on NBC's Today Show Thursday morning, McCain spokeswoman Nicole Wallace said, "We deeply regret offending Mr. Letterman, but our candidate's priority at this moment is to focus on this crisis," she said.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (768 Responses)
  1. Baze

    McCain's a joke. He canceled on Letterman to get a nap. He's tired and lagging behind in the fast pace of these final weeks. What a loser


    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. TexicoFrom Mexico

    McCain flat out lied to the Letterman Show! It wasnt that he canceled it was he said he was going to Washington....wrong he was on with Katie Kouric at the same time! Thats just silly....more spin from the McCain camp! He just wanted the debates postponed! Did we postpone debates in 1932 because we were in the middle of a recession? Nope! Obama please go to Mississippi and wait for McCAIN. This debate should go on! America has to keep moving!! McCain is trying to do everything he can to push these debates etc and I am sure if he could do them 1 day before the election he would!

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  3. Matt


    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |

    I doo too! Smell a rat? Oh, here comes McMouse.

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  5. Laura

    Um...isn't Letterman the one taking Metamucil? who cares – his ego was hurt so he's lashing out.

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  6. Jeff

    I'm no McCain fan, but Letterman needs to get over it. It's not like McCain didnt have better things to do...

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  7. AZVoter

    I LOVE how republicans are trying to use the "who is Letterman" tactic, when it was their guy who chose to announce his candidacy an Letterman's show.

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  8. jimmy


    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  9. Karen

    What a vicious, hateful, spiteful child Mr. Letterman is.Does he really think HE is more important than the country's welfare is?? This IS the real John McCain. He really doesn't know John McCain at all. Leave the politics to the politicians and you just try being funny for once.

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  10. reality

    yeah, he's a liar. Don't be naive though, washington is full of liars. It is what they do. I am voting for Obama but sometimes I wonder where all this lying and manipulation is going to take this country. Our government needs completely overhauling very badly. Revolution anyone?

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  11. Ellen

    John McCain has the courage to drop campaigning get back to Congress to effect CHANGE , not just talk about it

    John McCain has the commitment to get back work in Congress to legislate and work on a bipartisan solution, not just a " Present" politician he is a seasoned committed legislator

    John McCain is effecting change NOW not orating about CHANGE later

    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  12. rusty


    September 25, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  13. Ron

    Dave is right. Is McCain going to stop worrying about the economy because he has a war to fight? Is he going to pull out of Danfur because we need to send carrots to Peru? Multi-tasking and allowing others to do their job is part of leadership.

    Dave was right, McCain was wrong.

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  14. Don Hamilton

    Wow–reading all the comments posted gives a whole new meaning to the word bias. Are you kidding me? It appears that CNN has practically endorsed Obama/Biden and remorsed McCain/Palin.

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  15. Tylenol 666

    I Can't wait for the Movie to Come out! πŸ™‚

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  16. NOSS

    Wonderful, LETTERMAN can make your car, house or student loan to you or your family. MAybe Streisand, Chase, Sarandon, Damon can chip in for the American public.

    Do a little investigation and you'll find BArney Frank, his DEM and some GOP colleagues blocking oversight committee proposals for FAN- MAE and FRED-MAC as far back as 2001.

    Of course you would be entrusted to read beyond blogs and youtube

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  17. Jaime

    McCain must be letting some matter run on his depends right now. He knows that he would get killed on the debate, which most likely will be entirely about the economy. Poor "The COSMOS and McCain ROCKS," he/she seems to be the only fool still writing in support of the AARP politician on this topic.

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  18. Triggidy

    For those of you saying that McCain/Palin shouldn't go on these "liberal" shows, remember how Obama went right into that blatant right-wing set-up town hall meeting with the big-time pastor (his name eludes me at the moment)? He took his lumps on an obviously biased program and the Repubs got their soundbites from him ("above my paygrade," et al) to throw at the evangelicals. Hooray. McCain/Palin will probably only go to Fox News, if they'll even do that. You want to win over independent votes, you got to get out there and SAY SOMETHING OF MERIT! Perhaps that's below their paygrade.

    September 25, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
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