McCain: Clinton formidable in 2016
© Greg Nash

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainOvernight Defense: States pull National Guard troops over family separation policy | Senators question pick for Afghan commander | US leaves UN Human Rights Council 13 GOP senators ask administration to pause separation of immigrant families McCain, Coons: Trump should withdraw controversial refugee nominee MORE (R-Ariz.) said Monday that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonLewandowski says 'womp womp' at story of young girl being separated from mother at border Giuliani: FBI asked me about tease of a 'surprise' before election Republicans tear into IG finding on Clinton probe MORE would be a formidable candidate for president if she runs in 2016. 

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that Secretary Clinton would be a very strong candidate,” McCain said at an event in Chicago, according to Bloomberg News. 

McCain said her work as secretary of State had been impeccable, with the exception of the deadly attack on a diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, last year.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt she has widespread support,” he said. “Her work as secretary of state, with the exception of this issue of Benghazi — which isn’t going away — I think has been outstanding. I think she would be viewed by anyone, Republican or Democrat, as a very formidable candidate for 2016.”

After losing the presidential election to President Obama in 2008, McCain was skeptical how much weight his words carry. 

"Being a loser, I'm not sure what I have to say would be very impactful," he said.

McCain joked earlier this year that given a choice between Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSenate passes 6B defense bill This week: House GOP caught in immigration limbo Amendments fuel resentments within Senate GOP MORE (R-Ky.) and Clinton in 2016, he would have a “tough choice.” 

Early polling has shown Clinton the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination if she decides to enter the race. 

McCain also called Joe Biden a “wonderful guy.” Biden is also considered a possible contender for the Democratic nomination in 2016. The Arizona senator said it would be a mistake to “rule Joe Biden out of the mix.”