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Trump reportedly nixed statement praising life of John McCain

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Donald Trump
President Trump and John McCain had feuded for years,
and Trump was reportedly not invited to McCain’s
funeral.

Alex Wong/Getty
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  • President Donald Trump has faced criticism for his
    statement following the death of John McCain, which did not say
    anything kind about the late senator and war hero.
  • Trump reportedly rejected a statement from his aides
    praising McCain, saying he wanted to post his own statement on
    Twitter instead.
  • Trump and McCain had feuded for years, most notably in
    2016 when Trump said McCain was “not a war hero” because he had
    been captured in Vietnam.
  • McCain reportedly requested that former presidents
    Barack Obama and George W. Bush deliver eulogies at his
    funeral, while Trump was not invited
    .

President Donald Trump rejected a White House statement mourning
the loss of John McCain and praising the late senator and war
hero, according to a
report from The Washington Post
.

Sources told the Post that White House aides including
press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Chief of Staff John
Kelly advocated for a personalized statement that praised
McCain’s longtime service in both the Army and the US Senate.
Multiple drafts of the statement had been written in advance and
a final version of it had been prepared for the president’s
approval.

Trump instead reportedly told aides he would issue his own
statement, which critics noted did not contain a personal message
about McCain, who died
on Saturday
 at the age of 81.

“My deepest sympathies and respect go out to the family of
Senator John McCain,”
Trump tweeted
on Saturday. “Our hearts and prayers are with
you!”

The statement stands in stark contrast with the tributes offered
by former presidents, Congressional colleagues of McCain’s, and
world leaders, who
used glowing language
to mark McCain’s death and note his
distinguished military and political career. Melania Trump even
took to Twitter to thank McCain for his “service
to the nation
.”

Sanders, who tweeted Sunday that McCain was a “great
American
” declined to comment on the Washington Post report
Sunday. 

Trump had feuded with McCain for years, most notably in 2016 when
Trump said McCain was “not a war hero” because he was
captured by North Vietnamese soldiers
.

“I like people that weren’t captured,” Trump said.

McCain frequently criticized Trump for his behavior and policies,
and dramatically cast the deciding vote to not repeal the
Affordable Care Act last year, an act that drew a
round of angry tweets
from Trump.

Critics on Saturday blasted for president for the seemingly
superficial nature of his words for McCain.

“It’s atrocious,” Mark Corallo, a former spokesman for Trump’s
legal team and a Republican strategist, told The Post. “At a time
like this, you would expect more of an American president when
you’re talking about the passing of a true American hero.”

McCain reportedly
requested that former presidents Barack Obama and
George W. Bush deliver eulogies at his funeral, while Trump
was not invited. Aides told the Post it is unclear if Trump will
be at Capitol Hill on Friday where McCain will lie in state as
part of his funeral procession

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