McCain told host John King:
"With a high-pressure situation, there's always tensions that develop within campaigns, and there were clearly tensions between Steve Schmidt and people in the Palin camp."Video after the jump.
"There are fundamental facts ... that cannot be denied. When we selected or asked Sarah Palin to be my running mate, it energized our party. We were ahead in the polls, until the stock market crashed. And she still is a formidable force in the Republican Party."
"And I have great affection for her. Did we always agree on everything in the past? Will we in the future? No."
Update: Left Coast Rebel ponders McCain's motive, while FReepers say Whiskey Tango Foxtrot over his rather odd Maoist phraseology ("Let a thousand flowers bloom").