McCain Defends Palin (Without Naming Her) He also praises Obama's 'terrific' speech By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Jan 15, 2011 10:59 AM CST 26 comments Comments In this Dec. 3 file photo, Sarah Palin talks during a book-signing in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Virginia Postic, File) (Newser) – He never mentions the name Sarah Palin, and he certainly goes nowhere near the phrase "blood libel," but John McCain comes to the defense of his former running mate in the Washington Post. "Imagine how it must feel to have watched one week ago the incomprehensible massacre of innocents committed by someone who had lost some essential part of his humanity ... and to have heard in the coverage of that tragedy voices accusing you of complicity in it," he writes. It's easy to understand "how strong a need someone would feel to defend him or herself against such a slur." McCain also lavishes praise on President Obama and his "terrific" post-shooting speech. "I believe he is a patriot sincerely intent on using his time in office to advance our country's cause," he writes. "I reject accusations that his policies and beliefs make him unworthy to lead America." And while he says the accusations that heated rhetoric caused the shooting are unfair, McCain acknowledges the need to cool things down. "Our political discourse should be more civil than it currently is, and we all, myself included, bear some responsibility for it not being so."