Sen. John McCain was in good spirits during his speech Wednesday at the Heritage Foundation.
Perhaps it was the friendly crowd at the right-leaning think tank. Perhaps it was a hearty breakfast. Whatever it was, the longtime Republican senator from Arizona and now chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee had a slew of entertaining one-liners.
To be sure, most of McCain's remarks were serious. He blasted President Obama and his administration for being too soft on Iran in the recent nuclear deal, for failing to provide defensive weapons to the Ukrainian military to fight pro-Russian separatists, and for not doing enough to combat Islamic militants in the Middle East.
Even so, your correspondent couldn't help but compile a list of McCain's laugh-worthy zingers from the event, in chronological order:
On his introduction:
"Thank you for not mentioning that I ran for president of the United States. After I lost I slept like a baby -- sleep two hours, wake up and cry. Sleep two hours, wake up and cry."On his introduction by the man who introduced him, Steven Bucci, who directs the organization's center for foreign and national-security policy:
"It was very eloquent for someone who's lacking in education."On panelist Roger Zakheim, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and former deputy staff director of the House Armed Services Committee:
"[He's] also intellectually deprived. He was one of the advisers to me during the presidential campaign -- probably one of the reasons I lost."On Russian President Vladimir Putin's annexation last year of the Crimea territory from the Ukraine:
"Many of you are too young to remember [the video game] Pac-Man, but that's what our friend Vladimir is doing."On sanctions that prevent McCain from entering Russia:
"By the way, I was sanctioned by Vladimir Putin and can't go to Siberia again this year."On his extended response to a reporter's question:
"End of rant -- that had nothing to do with your question."On the Pentagon updating its accounting practices in hopes of passing an audit:
"Never underestimate kicking that 1,000-pound sponge."On the Marine Corps:
"When I graduated from the Naval Academy, I tried to get into the Marine Corps but my parents were married."On his son's response to that joke:
"My son joins the Marine Corps, comes home and says, 'Dad, you know the Marines are part of the navy department -- the men's department.'"On South Carolina senator and GOP presidential candidate Lindsey Graham:
"Many of you know he's my illegitimate son" -- a reference to the bruising whisper campaign George W. Bush strategist Karl Rove launched against McCain during the 2000 Republican primary in the state.On the iPhone:
"My wife makes me [get] another goddamn one about once a month, it seems."