On CNN’s State of the Union Sunday morning, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) semi-walked back a comment he made earlier this week comparing President Barack Obama to British Prime Minister and famous Hitler-appeaser Neville Chamberlain for shaking hands with Cuban President Raul Castro at Nelson Mandela’s memorial service Tuesday—though he certainly did not retract his criticism of the handshake itself.
“I think it was gross exaggeration,” McCain said. “But I have no doubt that it’s a great propaganda value for the Cuban government, which is oppressive, repressive, continues to jail dissidents and continues to be, probably easily, the most repressive government in our hemisphere. I don’t think you should shake hands with someone who continues to violate his own country’s human rights. It happened. But it is what it is. I’m sure that Mr. Castro appreciated it.”
Host Candy Crowley continued to press him on the outlandish analogy.
“I’m sure it was an exaggeration, Candy,” McCain said, as if speaking about something someone else had done that he’d sorta heard about. “If you want me to plead guilty here on CNN, guilty.”
Watch the clip below, via CNN:
[Image via screengrab]
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