|Sen. John McCain|
Last night in Philadelphia, six-term Republican Sen. John McCain was honored with the National Constitution Center’s Liberty Medal for a lifetime of service and sacrifice to the country.
In accepting the award, McCain spoke of his two decades of military service including his 5+ years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam. He also addressed the current fractured political landscape today in Washington.
“To abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems,” he said, “is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.”
Clearly the “half-baked, spurious nationalism” was a jab meant for Donald Trump.
Trump being Trump, the president felt the need to slap back this morning during a radio interview with WMAL in Washington saying, “I’m being very, very nice but at some point, I fight back and it won’t be pretty.”
McCain, having survived over five years as a prisonoer of war in Vietnam and currently facing brain cancer, had a simple response to the president: “I have faced tougher adversaries.”
Trump and McCain have had a long history of acrimony going back to the last presidential campaign when Trump claimed McCain was not a war hero because he was captured in Vietnam.
This past summer, it was McCain’s “no” vote in the Senate that torpedoed Trump’s last try at repealing Obamacare.
On the other end of the class spectrum, Barack Obama – who faced McCain in the 2008 presidential election – congratulated McCain on being honored:
I’m grateful to @SenJohnMcCain for his lifetime of service to our country. Congratulations, John, on receiving this year’s Liberty Medal.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) October 16, 2017