By Richard Sisk
Daily News Washington Bureau
The hockey mom has gotten the hook, and John McCain is miffed.
McCain jumped in to defend Sarah Palin, who was disinvited Thursday to an anti-Iran rally outside UN headquarters next week, two days after Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) dropped out in a fit of pique over her presence.
"Gov. Palin was pleased to accept an invitation to address this rally and show her resolve on this grave national security issue," McCain said in a statement, but "regrettably that invitation has since been withdrawn under pressure from Democratic partisans."
Jewish groups sponsoring the rally in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza on Monday said Palin was knocked off the speakers' list to keep the event nonpartisan, not to placate Clinton.
"In order to keep the focus on Iranian threats and to ensure that this critical message not be obscured, the organizers of the rally have decided not to have any American political personalities appear," the Stop Iran Now coalition said in a statement.
Clinton was angered when her staff learned from reporters, and not the rally's sponsors, that the pro-Israel groups staging the event had invited Palin and the Alaska governor had accepted.
Clinton, who spoke at an Israel Bonds dinner in Manhattan Thursday night, declined to address reporters who asked about the rally.
Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn), who is undecided between McCain and Barack Obama, said Palin's invitation should not have been yanked.
"It's pathetic," Hikind said.