Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainSenate's defense authorization would set cyber doctrine Senate Dems hold floor talk-a-thon against latest ObamaCare repeal bill Overnight Defense: Senate passes 0B defense bill | 3,000 US troops heading to Afghanistan | Two more Navy officials fired over ship collisions MORE (R-Ariz.) defended his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R), in his first interview since their election loss last week.

McCain told NBC's Jay Leno on Tuesday that he was proud to have Palin as a running mate and that he didn't think that she hurt his ticket. Conservative bloggers, however, have noted that McCain didn't denounce leaks about her alleged lack of foreign policy knowledge and her shopping habits.

McCain also suggested that Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.) will remain an independent instead of a member of the Republican Party. McCain himself demurred when asked by Leno whether he would become an "Independent Republican," just like Lieberman has called himself an "Independent Democrat."

Watch McCain talk about Palin and Lieberman below: