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Trump Lays into Ill John McCain at Political Rally
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31 May 2018 06:34 PM EST

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer, Image: John McCain (Image source: Koch/MSC via Wikimedia Commons)


Donald Trump and John McCain have a beef with each other going at least as far back as the 2016 election. But Trump is still keeping up his end of the fight, despite John McCain being on leave from the Senate as he fights brain cancer.

Perhaps the worst that has been said of the senator is when Trump said, while campaigning, "He's not a war hero. He was a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren't captured."

McCain was a U.S. Navy pilot during the Vietnam War and was shot down in 1967 over Hanoi. He was injured and then captured. He remained a prisoner of war for five years, experiencing torture, leaving him with permanent physical injuries. In 1981 he retired from the Navy and segued into politics, which includes a failed run for the presidency in 2008.

While the senator didn't call Trump out by name, he did fight back last year against young, wealthy men who were able to avoid the war with draft deferments. The president had four deferments for college and one for bone spurs.

"One aspect of the conflict, by the way, that I will never ever countenance is that we drafted the lowest-income level of America, and the highest-income level found a doctor that would say they had a bone spur," he said in an interview with C-SPAN. "That is wrong. That is wrong. If we are going to ask every American to serve, every American should serve."

And now Trump is laying into McCain again after he voted against repealing Obamacare last year and was also vocal against Trump's pick as CIA director, Gina Halperin.

At a rally in Nashville, Tennessee, Trump avoided calling out McCain by name but said his efforts to repeal the Affordable Healthcare Act were frustrated by the Arizona senator's decision to vote down the bill last July.

"We had it done folks, it was done, and then early in the morning somebody turned their hand in the wrong direction," he said. "The person that voted that way only talked repeal and replace. He campaigned on it."

While it wasn't from Trump's mouth, when McCain was vocal against Halperin, a White House press aide, Kelly Sadler, said in a private meeting that it didn't matter as he is "dying anyway." The comment was leaked, and Trump had more concern over who leaked it than the fact that it was said at all.

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