John McCain might stop getting interviews with Fox News if he keeps bucking the party line like this. Speaking to Fox News anchor Martha MacCallum, McCain took questions intended to be batting practice pitches to hit Obama, McCain pivoted to attacking his own party. On a question about Obama’s handling of the suspension of veteran’s funeral benefits brought on by the government shutdown, McCain spoke his mind:
“I think it’s been terribly handled by the White House, but let’s have a little straight talk, Martha, they wouldn’t have had the opportunity to handle it that way if we had not shutdown the government on a fool’s errand that we were not going to accomplish. The whole premise of shutting down the government was the repeal of Obamacare….we weren’t going to defund Obamacare, so we shutdown the government.”
The clip (edited by Talking Points Memo) cuts to MacCallum asking McCain how he feels about Senator Ted Cruz “representing” the Republican Party at the Value Voters summit.
“Martha, please. He’s not representing us,” McCain replies.
“Look at the Wall Street Journal poll,” McCain continues. “The Wall Street Journal is not a liberal organization. 24% of the American people approve of Republicans. That’s an all time low. We’d better wake-up. Defunding Obamacare is not achievable. So let’s not delude our supporters by telling them it is under the present circumstances because elections have consequences.”
“We’ll see,” MacCallum says, trying to leave open hope that Obamacare could get defunded.
“Not only will you see,” said McCain, “I guarantee it.”
And then, the best part of the video, just before it cuts to black: the sigh. MacCallum apparently really wanted McCain to lift up her hopes that the Republicans could get their way in the end, and that Obamacare could get defunded or at least delayed. That sigh could have been the sigh of every Republican voter, deluded, as McCain put it, into thinking they were going to win this one, when it becomes clearer every day that they will not.