Insider: McCain Did Not Regret Choosing Palin — That Was Misunderstood

Virginia Kruta Associate Editor
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Mark Salter, who co-authored Senator John McCain’s new book “The Restless Wave,” told ABC’s “The View” on Monday that McCain never regretted choosing former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his 2008 running mate: “Never regretted it — private or public — since.”

Salter was responding to a question from Sara Haines, who asked whether the comments about McCain’s initial desire to choose his friend, Senator Joe Lieberman (who was a Democrat at the time), had been misconstrued.

(RELATED: Sarah Palin Reacts To News McCain Regretted Choosing Her — ‘A Perpetual Gut Punch’)

Salter explained what had actually happened, saying that McCain only regretted not choosing Lieberman.

“He wanted to pick his friend, Joe Lieberman, who is a Democrat,” Salter explained.”The senator had just won the Republican nomination for president, and when that started to leak out to party elders, I guess we can call them, they were quite adamant that there would be a challenge on the floor, and it would be a mess and your convention would be upset, and it would be a bad way to start the general campaign.”

Salter said that he was among the advisors who counseled McCain to choose someone else, and eventually, they were successful.

“So we prevailed. Me and other advisors convinced him not to pick Lieberman. He then went and looked at the pool of other candidates and chose Governor Palin. He didn’t regret choosing governor Palin. He regretted not picking Joe Lieberman, but then he picked her and never said anything. Never regretted it — private or public — since. I think that was misunderstood.”