McCain at the 2011 Time 100 gala
|Born||Meghan Marguerite McCain
October 23, 1984
Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.
|Alma mater||Columbia University|
|Occupation||Columnist, blogger, author|
|Known for||Daughter of U.S. Senator John McCain
Author of My Dad, John McCain & Dirty Sexy Politics
She is the daughter of 2008 presidential nominee and long-time U.S. Senator John McCain and Cindy Hensley McCain. McCain first received media attention in 2007 for her blog, McCain Blogette, on which she documented life on the campaign trail and mused about fashion, music, and pop culture. In 2009, she became a contributing author for The Daily Beast, and in 2011, began appearing as a contributor on MSNBC. In 2013, she began hosting on the start-up Pivot channel and in 2014 assumed the co-host role on Pivot's TakePart Live until that show was canceled later in the year.
In July 2015, McCain joined Premiere Networks as host of the nationally syndicated radio program America Now. McCain also signed on as a FOX News contributor in July of 2015, and was officially named a regular co-host of the afternoon talk program Outnumbered on November 14, 2016.
She was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, and attended Phoenix Country Day School and Xavier College Preparatory, an all-girl Catholic high school. She attended Columbia University, where she earned her bachelor's degree in art history. McCain originally planned to become a music journalist and interned at Newsweek and Saturday Night Live.
McCain says that she is "a woman who despises labels and boxes and stereotypes". McCain also has described herself as a Republican who is "liberal on social issues". She registered as an Independent when she was 18 years old and she voted for John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election. She agrees with her father's positions on global warming and stem-cell research. At first she had doubts about the 2003 invasion of Iraq but subsequently supported her father's position regarding it. She has stated she is pro-life, in favor of sex education and birth control. She has expressed an opinion that conservatives demonstrate hypocrisy regarding abortion: "They go on and on about how evil and wrong abortion is, but don't like to talk about how easy it is to not get pregnant."
McCain has championed for gay rights and she has commented that the cause of the gay community for equality is "one of the ones closest to my heart". As such, she spoke at the Log Cabin Republicans convention in April 2009, describing her cultural and political perspectives with the declaration: "I am concerned about the environment. I love to wear black. I think government is best when it stays out of people's lives and business as much as possible. I love punk rock. I believe in a strong national defense. I have a tattoo. I believe government should always be efficient and accountable. I have lots of gay friends. And, yes, I am a Republican." She supports same-sex marriage and gay adoption. In June 2009, McCain posed for the NOH8 Campaign, a celebrity photo project that protests California's Proposition 8 constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, which her mother Cindy also posed for. She was in favor of repealing "Don't ask, don't tell" and allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the U.S. military. She serves on the Board of Directors of GLAAD., and hosted the organization's Concert for Love and Acceptance in Nashville in 2015.
In terms of economic policy, she has remarked on The Rachel Maddow Show: "I didn't even take Econ[omics] in college. I don't completely understand it so I'd hate to make a comment one way or the other. That's – truly of all the things – I keep reading and I just don't understand it."
Role in 2008 presidential election
On June 12, 2008, McCain wrote on her blog that she had changed her party registration to Republican. She said she did so "as a symbol of my commitment to my Dad and to represent the faith I have in his ability to be an effective leader for our country and to grow and strengthen the Republican party when he is elected President of the United States". In her book, Dirty Sexy Politics, McCain talks about how she nearly overdosed on Xanax on the day of the elections.
In 2008, she published a book titled My Dad, John McCain. In an interview on Larry King Live in September 2008, McCain stated that she had been too busy to have a romantic relationship while on her father's campaign trail. Although her blogging was devoted to gaining support for her father among the Generation Y electorate, by October, Steve Schmidt and other McCain campaign staffers had substantially limited her appearances on the campaign, deeming her "too controversial".
In March 2009, McCain wrote an article for The Daily Beast titled "My Beef With Ann Coulter". In this article, she questioned Republican support for conservative author and columnist Ann Coulter. While Coulter did not respond, conservative radio talk show host Laura Ingraham challenged McCain's article by comparing her to a "Valley Girl". Ingraham also mocked McCain, stating, "Ok, I was really hoping that I was going to get that role in The Real World, but then I realized that, well, they don't like plus-sized models." McCain responded to Ingraham in a second article for The Daily Beast titled, "Quit Talking About My Weight, Laura Ingraham" stating, "Instead of intellectually debating our ideological differences about the future of the Republican Party, Ingraham resorted to making fun of my age and weight, in the fashion of the mean girls in high school." McCain also stated on The View that she thought the change in discourse towards her body was "terrible" and further argued, "When Tyra Banks went on her show in a bathing suit and said 'kiss my fat ass,' that's what I feel like. Kiss my fat ass!" Ingraham responded by calling McCain a "useful idiot". During a later interview on Larry King Live, McCain said that as far as she is concerned, "with what's going on with Laura Ingraham, on my end, it's over." She also told King that Coulter never responded to her article, which she stated, "is fine with me. ... All I wanted to do is show women that you don't have to be Ann Coulter and Laura Ingraham to have a place in the Republican Party. ... Supriya Jindal is a good role model, but a lot of people hadn't heard of her."
In April 2009, she signed a six-figure book deal with Hyperion. Some 18,000 people were following her on Twitter. She described her aims in this way: "All I am trying to be is a young, cool Republican woman for other Republican women." Politico stated that while John McCain did not emerge from the 2008 election victorious, "his Bud Light-drinking, talk-show-appearing, insouciantly Twittering 24-year-old daughter" did. Speaking at the 2009 Log Cabin Republican Convention, McCain said there was "a war brewing in the Republican Party" between the past and the future, and that "Most of the old school Republicans are scared shitless of that future." She followed that by saying her enjoyment of Twitter was diminished by the presence of top Republican strategist Karl Rove, saying "I can't shake the fact that Karl Rove is following me – it can be creepy" and "We need to take Twitter back from the creepy people."
Statements such as these led news reports and commentators including Rachel Maddow and Kathleen Parker to conclude that McCain had the same "maverick gene" as her father. Following the April 2009 party switch by Senator Arlen Specter from Republican to Democratic, conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh suggested that many Republicans wished both John McCain and Meghan McCain would leave too. Meghan McCain's tweet in response was, "RED TIL I'M DEAD BABY!!! I love the republican party enough to give it constructive criticism, I love my party and sure as hell not leavin!" On a May 2009 episode of the Colbert Report, she stated her support for sex education and criticized Bristol Palin's sexual abstinence campaign, saying it was "not realistic for this generation". McCain also stated her own desires for the Republican Party: "It can be a party for a 24-year-old pro-sex woman. It can be." After John McCain campaign fixture Joe the Plumber made some anti-gay remarks (saying he would not have "queers ... anywhere near my children") in mid-2009, Meghan McCain took aim at him, saying "Joe the Plumber – you can quote me – is a dumbass. He should stick to plumbing." In September 2009 and February 2010, McCain had repeat stints as guest co-host of The View. In September 2010, she appeared on the NPR news quiz show Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me and won a prize for a listener.
Her campaign memoir, Dirty Sexy Politics, was published in September 2010. In it she expresses her opinions about Sarah Palin and describes her relationships with the McCain campaign staff. She states that the Republican Party seemed "to have lost its way in the last ten years", that the conservative movement seemed "hell-bent on restricting our freedoms rather than expanding them", and that within the Republican Party, she felt a certain stress to take over the ideas of others, like Mitt Romney, especially regarding same-sex marriage, which was a danger for the existence of the party. The New York Times described the book as a coming-of-age narrative about herself. However, other reviews were more scathing. Leon H. Wolf wrote "It is impossible to read Dirty, Sexy Politics and come away with the impression that you have read anything other than the completely unedited ramblings of an idiot." During the promotional tour for the book, McCain cancelled an appearance at Juniata College due to what she called, "unforeseen professional circumstances". However, according to her Twitter, she was actually in Las Vegas on a girls' weekend, as she got over a boyfriend ending their relationship via e-mail.
McCain has been lampooned and criticized by the political blogosphere. In September 2011, her lawyers asked RedState to take down posts that were parodying her commentary, as they made her appear buffoonish and arrogant. RedState complied. In November 2011, McCain became an analyst on MSNBC, and immediately got into a back-and-forth with 2012 Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich. In commentary on this, Gawker referred to her as "noted idiot Meghan McCain" and observed of her first outing that "she 'bets [her] career' that Newt Gingrich won't win the GOP nomination. What career."
A month-long road trip with comedian Michael Ian Black in the summer of 2011 led to a collaboration on the 2012 book America, You Sexy Bitch: A Love Letter to Freedom. In it, McCain lambasts Republican strategist Karl Rove for what she believes was his role in the attacks against her younger sister in her father's 2000 presidential campaign, castigates Bill Clinton for his actions in the Lewinsky scandal, but despite ideological differences, praises Hillary Clinton for having "pushed through many doors and shattered many glass ceilings for women in politics. I love women who don't put up with shit, and Hillary clearly doesn't."
In September 2013, her road-based talk show Raising McCain began on the start-up Pivot cable and satellite television channel. It was cancelled in January 2014. She instead was added as a co-host to the show TakePart Live on the same channel, appearing with Jacob Soboroff beginning in May 2014. The show was cancelled in December 2014.
- McCain, Meghan (2008), My Dad, John McCain, Aladdin Paperbacks. ISBN 1-4169-7528-4
- McCain, Meghan (2010), Dirty Sexy Politics, Hyperion. ISBN 1-4013-2377-4
- McCain, Meghan and Michael Ian Black (2012), America, You Sexy Bitch: A Love Letter to Freedom Da Capo Press. ISBN 0-307-99023-0
- McCain, Meghan (June 12, 2008). "Republican". McCain Blogette. Archived from the original on August 22, 2008. Retrieved June 13, 2008.
- Kirkpatrick, David D. "John McCain". The New York Times. Retrieved March 28, 2008.
- Raeves, Meston (February 23, 2008). "Meghan McCain's Straight Blog Express". Los Angeles Times.
- "McCainBlogette.com". McCainBlogette.com. Retrieved October 17, 2010.
- "Meghan McCain on ''The Daily Beast''". The Daily Beast. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- McKay, Hollie (November 29, 2011). "Chelsea Clinton and Meghan McCain Join NBC News: Do Political Kids Make Good Journalists?". Fox News. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Brian Steinberg (2016-10-08). "Meghan McCain Will Co-Host Fox News Channel's 'Outnumbered'". Variety. Retrieved 2016-11-14.
- Scherer, Michael (December 17, 2007). "Meghan McCain is not Chelsea Clinton". Salon.com.
- Veis, Greg (March 18, 2008). "Raising McCain". GQ.
- Memo to the GOP: Go Gay. By Meghan McCain. The Daily Beast. April 13, 2009.
- Berman, Judy (May 19, 2009). "Meghan McCain: "Pro-sex, pro-life, pro-gay marriage"". Salon.com. Retrieved October 17, 2010.
- Levingston, Steven (September 1, 2010). "Review of 'Dirty Sexy Politics,' by Meghan McCain". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 17, 2010.
- "Meghan McCain – Immigration Law in Arizona Divides Daughter and Dad". National Ledger. April 28, 2010. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
- Sinderbrand, Rebecca (April 18, 2009). "Meghan McCain warns of looming civil war in the GOP". CNN. Retrieved April 18, 2009.
- McCain, Meghan (June 19, 2009). "Why I Posed Against Prop 8". The Daily Beast. Retrieved June 21, 2009.
- "Meghan McCain on Mom's NoH8 Pic". The Advocate. February 7, 2010. Retrieved February 7, 2010.
- GLAAD: Board of Directors
- "Meghan McCain: "I Just Don't Understand" Economy". ABC News. March 13, 2009.
- Jessie Hellmann (November 3, 2016). "Meghan McCain: I voted for McMullin". The Hill.
- Miller, Oliver (September 21, 2010). "Meghan McCain Nearly Overdosed on Xanax, Wants to Be Honest About Her Flaws". TV Squad. Retrieved October 17, 2010.
- Schillinger, Liesl (September 10, 2010). "Daughter of John McCain Is a Rebel". The New York Times.
- McCain, Meghan (March 9, 2009). "My Beef With Ann Coulter". The Daily Beast. Retrieved December 21, 2012.
- Corley, Matt (March 9, 2009). "Laura Ingraham mocks Meghan McCain as being 'plus-sized.'". Thinkprogress.org. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Meghan McCain (March 14, 2009). "Quit Talking About My Weight, Laura Ingraham". Thedailybeast.com. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Thomson, Katherine (March 16, 2009). "Meghan McCain On 'The View': 'Kiss My Fat Ass!' (VIDEO)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 22, 2009.
- "Ingraham to Meghan McCain: You're a 'useful idiot'". CNN. March 17, 2009. Retrieved March 17, 2009.
- "Meghan McCain: 'I support the president'". CNN. March 24, 2009. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Libit, Daniel (April 11, 2009). "Crashing the Republican Party". The Politico. Retrieved April 17, 2009.
- Sindebrand, Rebecca (April 20, 2009). "Meghan McCain: Karl Rove's a 'twitter creep'". CNN. Retrieved April 20, 2009.
- Nintzel, Jim (April 20, 2009). "Meghan McCain Has That Maverick Gene". Tucson Weekly. Retrieved April 20, 2009.
- "'The Rachel Maddow Show' for Wednesday, March 11". The Rachel Maddow Show. MSNBC. March 12, 2009. Retrieved May 25, 2009.
- Parker, Kathleen. "Another McCain Throws Down a Challenge", The Washington Post (March 25, 2009). Retrieved May 25, 2009.
- Sinderbrand, Rebecca (April 29, 2009). "Limbaugh to Specter: Please take McCain with you". CNN. Retrieved April 30, 2009.
- Mooney, Alexander (May 19, 2009). "Meghan McCain takes aim at GOP, Bristol Palin's abstinence tour". CNN. Retrieved May 19, 2009.
- Kirchik, James (July 15, 2009). "Meghan McCain: Joe the Plumber – you can quote me – is a dumbass". The New Republic. Retrieved July 15, 2009.
- Shen, Maxine (August 20, 2009). "Meghan McCain liked 'View'". New York Post. Retrieved September 17, 2009.
- "September 4, 2010: Saturday's Show". Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me. NPR. September 4, 2010. Retrieved September 4, 2010.
- McCain, Dirty Sexy Politics, p. 5.
- McCain, Dirty Sexy Politics, p. 7.
- McCain, Dirty Sexy Politics, pp. 12–14.
- Victor Stepien, "The Brashness of Youth", Out & About Newspaper, December 3, 2010.
- "Meghan McCain's Dirty, Sexy Politics". New Ledger. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Brennan, Chris (September 24, 2010). "Meghan McCain Takes Heat For Vegas Vs. Juniata College". Philadelphia Daily News.
- "Totally (Not) Meghan McCain. FACE!". RedState. September 27, 2011. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Poor, Jeff (November 2, 2011). "New MSNBC contributor Meghan McCain: Newt Gingrich is 'sexist', 'disgusting'". The Daily Caller. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- "'Lean Stupid': MSNBC Hires Meghan McCain". Gawker.com. November 2, 2011. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
- Lee, MJ (May 29, 2012). "Meghan McCain dishes in new book". Politico. Retrieved May 31, 2012.
- Stelter, Brian (July 29, 2013). "Pivot TV Pitches to Young Viewers". The New York Times. Retrieved July 30, 2013.
- Molloy, Tim (January 11, 2014). "Pivot Ending 'Raising McCain,' 'Jersey Strong' (Exclusive)". The Wrap. Retrieved July 25, 2014.
- Wiegand, David (May 11, 2014). "Meghan McCain eager to co-host news talk on 'Take Part Live'". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved July 25, 2014.
- Flood, Brian (December 9, 2014). "'TakePart Live' Gets Axed by Pivot". Mediabistro.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Meghan McCain.|
- Meghan McCain on Twitter
- Column archives at The Daily Beast
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Meghan McCain at the Internet Movie Database
- Works by or about Meghan McCain in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- "Meghan McCain collected news and commentary". The New York Times.
- Meghan McCain and Michael Ian Black on their book America, You Sexy Bitch - Interview on the 7th Avenue Project radio show