SNL Transcripts: Sen. John McCain: 10/19/02: Meet the Press



 Saturday Night Live Transcripts


  Season 28: Episode 3




02c: Sen. John McCain / The White Stripes

Meet the Press

Tim Russert…..Darrell Hammond
…..Sen. John McCain

Tim Russert: Good morning. Our issue this Sunday: a test of will, for the president, as he waives invading Iraq. And for the Buffalo Bills, as they head to Miami. [ cracks up in laughter ] Joining us to discuss Iraq, the next move, is Sen. John McCain of Arizona. Former P.O.W., maverick Republican whose presidential candidacy stressing campaign finance reform nearly up-ended our eventual president, George W. Bush. Senator, welcome.

Sen. John McCain: Thanks, Tim.

Tim Russert: Senator, this administration.. seems hell-bent.. on confrontation.. with Iraq. You staying with the President?

Sen. John McCain: Tim, I believe we need to show our resolve at this time. We can’t underestimate the potential threat Saddam Hussein poses to this country.

Tim Russert: Senator, we have to ask: Are you considering running again in 2004?

Sen. John McCain: No, I have no plans to run for higher office. The President’s doing a fine job.

Tim Russert: No plans, but you wouldn’t say no.

Sen. John McCain: Tim, I have no interest in running.

Tim Russert: You didn’t answer my question, Senator.

Sen. John McCain: What was the question?

Tim Russert: Whether you would say no, unequivocally, to running for president of the United States?

Sen. John McCain: Tim, I haven’t even considered running.

Tim Russert: But you haven’t ruled it out. [ pauses ] Saddam Hussein. Do you believe he’ll use his chemical weapons, if udner attack?

Sen. John McCain: I think we have to operate under the assumption that he’s capable of anything.

Tim Russert: Spoken like someone running for President. So, if you were President, that would be your assumption?

Sen. John McCain: I think that’s the President’s assumption.

Tim Russert: So, you would not disagree with the President, were you to debate him in 2004?

Sen. John McCain: I have no interest in running.

Tim Russert: No interest.. but you’re open to the possibility?

Sen. John McCain: No, I would rebut any offers to run.

Tim Russert: In other words, you’re available? so, can we say on this program.. that John McCain.. is ready.. for offers to run?

Sen. John McCain: [ shakes head ] No.

Tim Russert: Then, if elected, would you serve?

Sen. John McCain: I don’t see that happening, but, yes, I would serve my country.

Tim Russert: You heard it here first! John McCain, ready to serve as our next President!

Sen. John McCain: That’s a mischaracterization. Look, Tim.. we’re on the brink of a war. I think the American people would rather we discuss Iraq.

Tim Russert: I understand. It’s a awkward subject. Let’s talk about Iraq. Most would like to see.. a new regime there. Would you consider running for the Presidency of Iraq?

Sen. John McCain: No, Tim.

Tim Russert: The presidency of Iraq is on the table! does John McCain take the challenge?

Sen. John McCain: I do not want to run for President of Iraq!

Tim Russert: So, you’d be willing to accept the draft?

Sen. John McCain: Tim, I don’t want to be President of anywhere!

Tim Russert: Alright. Senator, I want to read you a quote.. from the Washington Post.. October 2nd, 1999: “I am a candidate for President of the United States.” Your word, Senator.

Sen. John McCain: Well, Tim, that’s from the last election, when I was a candidate.

Tim Russert: So, you’re flip-flopping?

Sen. John McCain: I’m not flip-flopping, Tim.

Tim Russert: So, you’re a candidate? We can definitively say, on this show, that John McCain-

Sen. John McCain: I was a candidate in 200. I am not in 2004. I will not challenge President Bush as a leader of my party.

Tim Russert: What if President bush does not run?

Sen. John McCain: I don’t see any reason-

Tim Russert: What if he forgets to run?

Sen. John McCain: Alright, Tim.. alright, Tim..

Tim Russert: The President forgets to run for re-election.. and the Republicans are without a candidate. Does John McCain then step in to fill that void?

Sen. John McCain: I would call the President, and remind him to run.

Tim Russert: So, you’re running?

Sen. John McCain: No!

Tim Russert: You’re a candidate?

Sen. John McCain: I am not a candidate!

Tim Russert: John McCain is running for President in 2004?

Sen. John McCain: No.

Tim Russert: 2008?

Sen. John McCain: No.

Tim Russert: 2012.

Sen. John McCain: No!

Tim Russert: 20-16?

Sen. John McCain: No.

Tim Russert: 20-20?

Sen. John McCain: No!

Tim Russert: Let’s talk about 20-28.

Sen. John McCain: I’ll be 90.

Tim Russert: Alright. It’s 2028.. genetic engineering has extended the human lifespan to 200 years. Would a relatively young John McCain challenge a re-animated Jimmy Carter zombie?

Sen. John McCain: Now, President Carter’s been a great humanitarian.

Tim Russert: So, John McCain would back down? Are you afraid of Carter eating you?

Sen. John McCain: I don’t think that’s an accurate-

Tim Russert: So, you’re a candidate?

Sen. John McCain: No.. no..

Tim Russert: Senator, we have to move on, but one question: Any interest in running for President in 2004? [ chuckles ] Thanks for watching. If it’s Sunday, it’s “Meet The Press”. Go Bills!

[ fade out ]

SNL Transcripts

Author: Don Roy King

Don Roy King is directing his fourteenth season of Saturday Night Live. That work has earned him nine Emmys and thirteen nominations. Additionally, he has been nominated for thirteen DGA Awards and won in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Mr. King is also the creative director of Broadway Worldwide which brings theatrical events to theaters. The company has produced Smokey Joe’s Café; Putting It Together with Carol Burnett; Jekyll & Hyde; and Memphis, all directed by Mr. King. He completed the screen capture of Broadway's Romeo & Juliet in 2013. - LinkedIn

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