Palin, McCain join forces again

Former governor will campaign for Arizona senator's re-election bid

Posted: Thursday, January 21, 2010

PHOENIX - Sarah Palin and Sen. John McCain plan to campaign together again.

Toby Jorrin / The Associated Press File
Toby Jorrin / The Associated Press File

The Arizona Republican announced Wednesday that the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate will join him in Phoenix on March 26 to help campaign for his re-election to the U.S. Senate.

Palin is scheduled to attend a private fundraising event that evening. The next day, she and McCain will appear together at a public event, likely a rally, according to McCain spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan.

"I'm looking forward to getting back on the campaign trail with my former running mate, and I know my fellow Arizonans will welcome her, as well," McCain said in a statement. "Sarah energized our nation and remains a leading voice in the Republican Party."

Since their failed bid for the White House, McCain and Palin have had a couple of public appearances together, including a dinner in Washington. But the March events will mark the first time the pair will be on the campaign trail together since 2008, Buchanan said.

Palin has criticized McCain's campaign since their loss, saying in her book "Going Rogue" that there was substantial tension between her advisers and McCain's. She also details how she was prevented from delivering a concession speech in Phoenix on Election Night, and how she'd been kept "bottled up" from reporters during the campaign.

Palin hasn't criticized McCain himself, and the senator has stood by his decision to choose Palin as his running mate and has staunchly defended her.

Earlier this month, McCain refused to discuss material in "Game Change," a book that says Palin's vetting was "hasty and haphazard."

"I wouldn't know," McCain said on NBC's "Today" show. "The fact is, I'm proud of Sarah Palin and I'm proud of the campaign she waged. She energized our party."

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