McCain: On abortion, GOP should 'leave the issue alone'

"As far as young women are concerned, absolutely, I don't think anybody like me — I can state my position on abortion, but, other than that, leave the issue alone, when we are in the kind of economic situation and, frankly, national security situation we're in," McCain told "Fox News Sunday."


Pressed whether that meant Republicans should be willing to allow abortion rights, McCain said that he was simply suggesting the GOP strike a more conciliatory tone.

"I would allow people to have those opinions… I'm proud of my pro-life position and record and if someone disagrees with me, I respect your views," McCain said.

The Arizona lawmaker added that the GOP should also consider comprehensive immigration reform to endear the party to Hispanic voters, who similarly broke for Democrats in the recent election.

"I think we have to have a bigger tent, no doubt about it," McCain said. "And, obviously we have to do immigration reform. There is no doubt whatsoever that the demographics are not on our side."

McCain said Republicans "are going to have to give a much more positive agenda, it can't be just being against the Democrats."

"You have to be for things, and we have to give them something like the Contract with America, that we gave them some years ago," McCain said. "We have to give them something to be for."