July 4, 2009 / 5:00 PM / 10 years ago

McCain says resigning Palin will still play Republican role

WASHINGTON, July 4 (Reuters) - Republican Senator John McCain issued a statement of support for resigning Alaska Governor Sarah Palin on Saturday, saying she will play a leadership role in the Republican Party and in America.

McCain made the comment a day after Palin stunned the political world by announcing she is stepping down. Palin was McCain’s vice presidential running mate in last year’s U.S. presidential campaign won by Democrat Barack Obama.

“I have the greatest respect and affection for Sarah, Todd, and their family. I was deeply honored to have her as my running mate and believe she will continue to play an important leadership role in the Republican Party and our nation,” McCain said in a statement e-mailed to Reuters. (Reporting by Steve Holland, editing by Jackie Frank)

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