Facing a primary challenge from a candidate who says he isn't conservative enough, Senator John McCain (R-Arizona) trotted out his 2008 presidential ticket running mate Sarah Palin to adoring crowds in Tucson, AZ yesterday. And Palin rallied, "It was John McCain who warned us about this administration’s plan for growing government and digging us deeper into debt and spreading the wealth around. When all the votes are tallied, I think he’s going to win this one... Let's send the Maverick back to the Senate!"
Given how the two haven't spoken in 17 months, McCain's primary challenger J.D. Hayworth said of the pairing, "What we’re seeing from the governor is a very understandable example of gratitude. After all, it was John who really gave her an entree to the national stage." And one woman who was at the event told the Arizona Republic, "A lot of people say (Palin's support for McCain) is political payback. I have not heard one person say they're swayed." Another woman told the AP, "I just wanted to come and see Sarah Palin. I just think she's great, I read her book and I'd like to see her as president of the United States."
Palin tried to align McCain with more conservative views, "I admired his tireless crusade against the old pork-barrel-spending, earmarking, backroom-dealing ways of D.C. that make a whole lot of us pretty ill. Today, those issues are at the heart of a conservative movement that's sweeping this country... It's a beautiful grass-roots movement that's putting government back on the side of the people.... It's the tea-party movement, and I want to clear the air right now. Everybody supporting John McCain here today, we are all part of that movement."
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Palin also took the time to address her Facebook posting of a map with gun sights/crosshairs over Democratic districts up for reelection this fall, which raised criticism from Democrats like Rep. Anthony Weiner, saying, "We know violence is not the answer. When we talk about taking up arms, we're talking about our votes."
McCain will be joined by Palin at another campaign event today.