January 25th, 2009
01:30 PM ET
7 years ago

McCain: I won't be a 'rubber stamp' for Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/11/18/art.mccainreelect.gi.jpg caption="McCain says his new role after a bruising election is that of loyal opposition."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. John McCain, who faced a long, bruising campaign against President Obama, has taken on a new role in the Obama administration: "Loyal opposition."

McCain defined his role as, "[To] help and work together where I can, and stand up for the principles and the party and the philosophy that I campaigned on and have stood for for many years," to Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday.

McCain, who has long championed bipartisanship in Washington, said while it's important for Americans to come together, it doesn't mean "that as the loyal opposition that I or my party will be a rubber stamp."

But the former Republican presidential candidate said he can use his experience to help Obama with a long-standing problem besides the economy.

"I think I can help in devising a strategy for Afghanistan. The hard truth is that the Afghan war has deteriorated," he said.

McCain's comments come amid recent U.S. bombings targeting al Qaeda in the Waziristan area of Pakistan on the border with Afghanistan. The rocky terrain has long been seen as a haven for Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda operatives.

soundoff (395 Responses)
  1. Alaskim

    It is difficult not to simply laugh. Mr. McCain, Mr. Boehner and Mr. McConnell rubber stamped eight years of failed Bush Administration policies. Our Country is devastated and now they think we should listen to their opinions? Really?

    January 25, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  2. carol

    John McCain needs to do what is in the best interests of this country and not tow party line if not. He needs to remember he was a member of the party that got us into this mess to start with and that Prez Obama is doing what is right for this country and is prepared to listen to others also.

    January 25, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  3. JediMasterMatt_Bethlehem, PA

    I guess the honeymoon is over, and now McCain is back to the old way of 'US vs. THEM'.

    Noone should be a 'rubber stamp' for Obama, but you SHOULD be supportive of the new President and his policies where you can if it moves this country forward out of the mess that we're ALL in together.

    January 25, 2009 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  4. chad in avery, ca.

    a real maverick would consider voting against party lines.
    thats what mavs do right john?
    oh wait, your only a maverick 10% of the time.

    January 25, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  5. Jerry

    Your party and philosophy have proven to be detrimental to the Republic, either begin to cooperate with our new Commander-In-Chief or face the consequences and shared responsibilty in the event of our nation's total economic collapse. This is not the time for party loyalty, it is a matter of U.S. national security. Either get on board, or take your un-American values elsewhere sir!!! Obama is the President, chosen overwhelmingly by the American people to take on the challenges facing this nation. If you wish for Obama to fail, you are simultaneously wishing for America's failure as well. It's not about Right vs. Left, Repub Vs. Dem...IT'S ABOUT AMERICA STUPID!!!

    January 25, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  6. California Gold

    I think McCain should go find Bin Laden. Make good on his campaign "I can get him" promise.

    January 25, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  7. Gail

    oh so NOW you decide to be bi-partisian? – unlike your 90% support of every criminal act Bush did? NOW you're a Maverick? Your bad bad judgment still shows. If you're not a part of the solution, you're just a part of the problem – get on that GOP.

    January 25, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  8. Streawmood Bill

    Funny how it took an election debacle to make Jogn McCain and all these Republican legislators aware of what the Dems knew all the time, "It is not the function of the Congress to rubber stamp whatever the president wants."

    That's what "checks and balances" means boys and girls.

    Perhaps if the Reps had put that in practice, more of them would have returned to office after the election.

    January 25, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  9. S. Boatman

    You voted with Bush 90% of the time! That makes you a RUBBER STAMP! You just ran out of ink!

    January 25, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  10. chris

    FINALLY, I hope they all do it this way. DO NOT vote 4 or against something just because the party you're in. If it had been done that way the last 8 years we most likely would not be here now. My only question is why now?

    January 25, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  11. Obamacrat

    Funny how McCain didn't give any interviews in the weeks leading up to the election now he's making the rounds on every news show.

    January 25, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  12. dkr



    January 25, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  13. william

    McCain you lost. The GOP was A rubber stamp for failure. I still want to know you said you could get Bin Laden. When are you going to let the rest of us know how?

    January 25, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  14. Heather in WA

    I don't expect nor want anyone on Capitol Hill to be a rubber stamp. However, I do expect and will demand cooperation and constructive behavior from all of our nation's representatives, including you McCain. This girl has had enough of "my team, their team" childish attitudes. Grow up, every last one of you.

    January 25, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  15. Dylan, Pennsylvania

    My question is, where was this McCain during the Presidential campaign? Where was the maverick and the bi-partisan Senator from Arizona?

    He didn't exist. He was drown out by his right wing religious "friends" he sold his soul to in order to be the Republican nominee.

    Lets get back to the days where Republicans stood for smaller government and constitutional protections.

    Lets end the days where they stand for the religious right and their disgusting intolerance and their filthy greed.

    January 25, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  16. Outspoken

    Well, that is certainly a relief to know. That's it John, get tough.....NOW THAT THE CAMPAIGNS OVER!!

    January 25, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  17. Roderic Wilson

    Why would anyone think that the failed policy of the Bush era hadn't work, why would the Republican think their idea is going to work. Change mean change the new administration have new ideas and a least should be givien a chance. The last eight years have been a bust and we need a fresh start for the long haul not a patch work for the U.S. not just businesses.

    January 25, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  18. JHal


    January 25, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  19. Cyrus Shick in Nashville, TN

    I am extremely happy that Obama was elected, but I agree, people should have their own minds. Now that he is in power, bipartisanship should be the way to go. The president shouldn't decide everything, and the Senate and House should have their own voices too.

    January 25, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  20. Brian

    I'm from AZ and can not wait to vote this idiot out of office. Totally worthless. Go away Mcsame and take Caribou Barbie with you.

    January 25, 2009 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  21. Eric

    Jon and Mick, you are idiots. When the legislature and executive branch are controlled by the same party, there will be what appears to be a "rubber stamp" effect, because they essentially will be on the same page. Jon claims the Democratic party is "diverse" enough to not rubber stamp Obama? Hah! They have been salivating at the chance to approve all of his proposals , and have already demonstrated (the stimulus) that they know they have no need to act in a bi-partisan manner. Stop picking on John McCain, he is one of the most honorable men this country has ever seen.

    January 25, 2009 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  22. bless the US

    well that's good. don't become a rubber stamp. I seriously hope that the past election taught you to stand by your own convictions and beliefs and not that of the party or the wing nuts.

    If your strength is afghanistan and war tactics, stick to those. You know what its like on a battlefield, worked your way from bottom up.

    If you vote yes or no as long as you have good reason and conviction for each then its Ok

    January 25, 2009 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  23. SueB

    McCain may have voted Repub 90% – by the way, that doesn't mean he voted with Bush since the Repubs often voted against Bush – but Obama voted Dem 99.5%. McCain pointed out, rather loudly, several years ago the housing industry was going to collapse, which could have major impact on rest of our economy. He tried to get some intervention. But, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd and company said he was crying wolf. I do hope the Repubs go back to being Repubs – financially conservative, instead of trying to be the freespending Dem look alikes they've been for the past several years!

    January 25, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  24. Corey W

    He can't be all things to all people, so he will pick and choose his fights when its conveinant to him or his party. Yeah, right, please go sit down somewhere you repubs lost.

    January 25, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  25. TKW-New Mexico

    Here we go America, we finally get a president who is trying to bring this country together and fix the mess Bush created and the Republicans are up to their old tricks again. All the Republicans under Bush should be banished to Texas with Bush to retire.

    January 25, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
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