Her father’s shadow continued to follow McCain throughout her tenure. Everything she did was measured against him. If she said anything anti-Trump, she was her father's daughter. When she took the Republican Party line — which she increasingly did as time went on — it was seen as a failure of the brand. She could be maudlin, stubborn and pugnacious. But she was always good TV.
Rumor about trained relationship with co-hosts may have contributed to McCain’s departure. Were the fights for real, or for show? (“I will still be here another month, so if you guys want to fight a little bit more, we have four more weeks,” she said last Thursday.)
Ultimately, though, “The View” needed Meghan McCain. Moreover, it will always need someone like her. The problem is there are fewer and fewer conservative pundits who haven’t transitioned fully to Trumpism. She was far from independent, yet McCain could still surprise us. She may be a dying breed. Once upon a time, Elizabeth Hasselbeck was viewed as “The View’s” worst host; now her comments look quaint. McCain may be leaving, but chances are, whoever follows her into the seat will probably be much, much worse.