Meghan McCain, in her return to “The View” following the death of Sen. John McCain, remembered her father Monday as a man full of important ideals that she said still exist throughout the country.
“It made me so inspired that the ideals that my father espoused through his career are the ideals of America,” she said, fighting back tears after an emotional welcome from her co-hosts.
“I think there was a lot of talk about what died with him. And I am here to tell you: it didn’t. It is alive, and I need us to remember that,” she continued. “He believed in American exceptionalism. He believed that America is the greatest country in the history of the world.”
McCain, whose father passed away in August after fighting brain cancer, said that he “would have loved” the tributes that were paid to him throughout the state of Arizona before he was laid to rest in Maryland.
She also thanked her co-hosts for their support of her family and her father, telling Whoopi Goldberg that the Arizona Republican loved her.
“My father loved you, he loved you,” she told Goldberg before receiving a tight hug from the comedian.
“You are my family, he loved you and you wanted me to come back here, which is why I’m here,” she said.
After co-host Yvette Nicole Brown asked McCain about the eulogy she delivered at her father’s funeral, McCain told the panel that her father meticulously planned his funeral services, which took place over five days.
“Let me tell you, everything was planned down to the song and every element, everything that was done, including my eulogy, he planned—everything,” she said.
“I was so honored that he picked me as his daughter. I was the only woman to do it—the only woman to eulogize him. I think he did that on purpose, too.”
McCain, who often squares off with the more progressive hosts of the show during on-air political debates, told the panel that their friendships transcend political beliefs.
“None of us agree at this table very much when it comes to politics and the world, but we are all sisters here supporting each other,” she said. “But this is what America should be.”
Those bonds, McCain explained, helped her in the aftermath of her father’s passing.
“I really, really would not have made it through this experience without every single one of you and I’m eternally grateful,” she told her co-hosts.
CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that John McCain passed away in August.