Washington, Oct 17 : Republican presidential candidate John McCain after spending the day on the campaign trail returned to New York to bury the hatchet with popular late-night show host David Letterman, since he cancelled his appearance on the show on September 24.
The popular late-night host had been lampooning McCain since September 24, when McCain canceled an appearance, saying he had to return to Washington to address the US financial crisis. However, he then appeared on the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, drawing Letterman's comedic wrath.
McCain offered a mea culpa shortly after sitting down onstage and being playfully asked by Letterman, "Can you stay?" McCain told the host "I screwed up" by canceling the earlier appearance on the show.
Letterman milked the situation prior to McCain taking the stage and throughout much of the show, but did say "I'm willing to put this behind us."
The two kept things fairly light-hearted through the early part of three segments, which included perhaps McCain's best line at Letterman's expense.
"Now's not the time to raise anyone's taxes," McCain said. "Except yours."
Letterman did turn the conversation to some serious matters and had some hard questions for McCain, especially about his choice of running mate Sarah Palin and her attacks on Barack Obama over his relationship with William Ayers.
McCain's appearance on "Late Show" wasn't without drama this time around either. There was a two-hour delay flying into the New York area, so McCain got off his campaign plane in Pennsylvania and took a helicopter to be sure to make the show.
Letterman had heaped scorn on McCain for days after the blow-off. He made more jokes about the incident in his monologue and before McCain appeared, including using a prop map humorously tracing McCain's movements after he had canceled the earlier appearance.