Meghan McCain claimed that many Republicans treat her like "a freak" and "a mutant" while speaking on MSNBC on Thursday.
She spoke out about the backlash during a segment about ideological divisions within the GOP. McCain said that many people do not consider her a true conservative because she departs from the party on issues like gay marriage.
"I'm a proud moderate Republican, but using the word 'moderate' in the Republican party today is considered a dirty word," she said. "Many people in the Republican party treat me like I'm a freak, like there's something wrong with me and that I'm a mutant from the original design."
When pressed on being treated like "a freak," she joked, "I work for this network for a reason." (McCain joined MSNBC as a contributor in November 2011.) She added that "if you're not an extreme right-wing conservative... you're given no respect."
Later, McCain reflected on what she perceived as the shift to extremism in the GOP, and called out two prominent conservative bloggers. “I wish I knew more where it came from I don’t understand the popularity of Michelle Malkin and Andrew Breitbart and people who exacerbate people's fears," she said.
She also had a clear message to her critics. She noted that some members of the GOP may reject her, "but I always stand here and say you can’t actually kick me out of the Republican Party.”