POLITICS
11/02/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

McCain On Ifill: I Wish They'd Picked Someone Else

Yesterday, John McCain responded to right-wing attacks on debate moderator Gwen Ifill (over a book she's writing about politics and race) reasonably, saying he thought the PBS correspondent would be "totally objective." But today on "Fox and Friends" he turned that endorsement into something more like a warning. The Politico reports:

McCain also went further than he had yesterday in responding to a question about Gwen Ifill serving as the moderator of tonight's veep debate, saying he preferred somebody else.

"Frankly, I wish they had picked a moderator that isn't writing a book favorable to Barack Obama," McCain said of Ifill, who is examining the rise of the Illinois Democrat and other post-civil rights black leaders. "Let's face it. But I have to have to have confidence that Gwen Ifill will handle this as the professional journalist that she is."

"Life isn't fair, as I mentioned earlier in the program."

McCain agreed to Ifill as moderator on August 6th, and her book had been public for weeks at the time.

Ifill herself has responded to the controversy:

"Do you think they made the same assumptions about Lou Cannon (who is white) when he wrote his book about Reagan?" said Ifill, who is black. Asked if there were racial motives at play, she said, "I don't know what it is. I find it curious."