Political Titans Go At It Over What Ex-Presidential Candidate Calls 'A Joke'

WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — Former Republican presidential candidate John McCain likely won’t be vacationing on Long Island any time soon.

Not after what he said Wednesday, and certainly not as a guest of New York Sen. Chuck Schumer.

McCain, R-Ariz., was trying to make a point during debate on a defense bill Wednesday when he said to Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., “Last I checked, Long Island was part — albeit sometimes regrettably — part of the United States of America.”

That drew a swift rebuke from Democrat Schumer, who took to Twitter to demand an apology.

“All of America saw how heroic Long Islanders were on 9/11. Long Island deserves an apology,” Schumer tweeted.

McCain then stood on the Senate floor to explain it was a joke apologized to Schumer — sort of.

“In an exchange here on the floor … I mentioned the wonderful long people — wonderful Long Island, I made a joke,” McCain said. “I’m sorry. There’s at least one of my colleagues that can’t take a joke, and so I apologize if I offended him and hope that someday he will have a sense of humor.”

That only seemed to annoy Schumer more.

“NYers can take a joke. But if Sen. John McCain wants to mock parts of America, stick to Arizona.”

Schumer later said of McCain: “I don’t think he meant it to be malicious, but I didn’t want to let it go unanswered.”

What do you think? Do McCain’s words bug you? Sound off below …

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