McCain recently sat down with a reporter at the Deseret News to talk about the 2012 election, and Governor Palin:
John McCain’s running mate in his 2008 presidential bid, Sarah Palin, “would have added a lot to the race” had she been a candidate for the White House this election, the senator said Thursday.
“How she would have done, I can’t say,” McCain told the Deseret News. “I know she has a very strong, significant base. That’s why all these candidates line up and ask for her endorsement.”
Asked if putting a “game changer” in the No. 2 spot on the Republican presidential ticket would be a winner this time, McCain said his loss to President Barack Obama wasn’t Palin’s fault.
“I don’t think you can attribute our failure to Sarah Palin. She energized our party,” he said. “She beat (Vice President) Joe Biden in the debate and then, of course, the stock market crashed.”
McCain said the race was over when middle-class Americans saw their savings disappear overnight, not because of Palin, who ended up being widely seen as unprepared to be in a position where she could assume the presidency.
“I am convinced that Sarah Palin was a very strong attribute to our campaign, and I love her and admire her,” McCain said, adding he had no second thoughts about naming her over Romney and other possible running mates.
Recently, McCain said he went with Palin over Romney “because we had a better candidate,” a remark that some saw as a slap at Romney. Thursday, he said his pick was “not so much a matter of the qualities of the candidates or their credentials, but how that candidate fit best in the campaign we were trying to wage.”
You can read the entire interview here.