Carly Fiorina, a key surrogate for John McCain on economic issues, said on Tuesday that Sarah Palin does not have the experience needed to run a major company like the one that Fiorina formerly headed.
"Do you think [Sarah Palin] has the experience to run a major company, like Hewlett Packard?" asked the host.
"No, I don't," responded Fiorina. "But you know what? That's not what she's running for."
Appearing on the McGraw Milhaven Show on St. Louis KTRS Radio, Fiorina went on to stress that the Alaska Republican had more executive experience than anyone else on the ticket, specifically Barack Obama.
"I find it quite stunning actually that the Barack Obama campaign is questioning Sarah Palin's experience," she said. "She has more executive experience than he does and she is the vice presidential nominee and he is the presidential nominee."
But the admission that Palin wasn't prepared to run the very business that Fiorina once headed is a gaffe that could come back to haunt the McCain campaign. Certainly, when critics mainly argue that Palin lacks the gravitas to step in for McCain at a moment's notice, and when the economy is the major topic on the campaign trail, it is easy to see how Fiorina's comment could make its way into an Obama or DNC attack ad.
UPDATE: Fiorina went on MSNBC to defend her comments and decides to double down, arguing that John McCain, Barack Obama, and Joseph Biden couldn't run Hewlett Packard either. The Obama campaign, seeking to compound the fallout of her earlier statement, highlights just the portion where she talks about McCain.
"If John McCain's top economic advisor doesn't think he can run a corporation, how on Earth can he run the largest economy in the world in the midst of a financial crisis? Apparently even the people who run his campaign agree that the economy is an issue John McCain doesn't understand as well as he should," said Obama campaign spokesman Tommy Vietor.
LATE UPDATE: Here is the full clip of Fiorina on MSNBC