Arizona Sen. John McCain has harsh words for President Donald Trump in his soon to be released book, and announces in it he will not seek re-election.
“(Trump) has declined to distinguish the actions of our government from the crimes of despotic ones,” McCain writes in an excerpt from his new book, “The Restless Wave: Good Times, Just Causes, Great Fights, and Other Appreciations,” The Hill reported.
“The appearance of toughness, or a reality show facsimile of toughness, seems to matter more than any of our values,” he continues in his observations about the president.
The 81-year-old McCain, who was first elected to the Senate in 1986 and re-elected most recently in 2016, said he will not be seeking another term.
“This is my last term. If I hadn’t admitted that to myself before this summer, a stage 4 cancer diagnosis acts as ungentle persuasion,” he writes in his book.
McCain was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer last July.
The senator has been undergoing chemotherapy, as well as radiation treatments and physical therapy in his home state of Arizona, and has not been able to return to Washington since leaving in December.
McCain explains in his book, with the decision not to seek re-election, he feels freer to vote his “conscience without worry.”
“I’m freer than colleagues who will face the voters again. I can speak my mind without fearing the consequences much. And I can vote my conscience without worry,” he relates.
“I don’t think I’m free to disregard my constituents’ wishes, far from it,” McCain adds. “I don’t feel excused from keeping pledges I made. Nor do I wish to harm my party’s prospects. But I do feel a pressing responsibility to give Americans my best judgment.”
The Arizonan clearly felt no compunction to vote party line, when he cast the deciding vote against repealing the Affordable Care Act last summer.
Trump referenced that vote during his Saturday night rally in Michigan, without mentioning McCain’s name, as he has multiple times since the senator cast it.
“Except for one vote, remember that one vote? Three o’clock in the morning. Thumbs down. What a vote that was,” Trump said. “But despite that it’s going to come out great,” pointing to the repeal of the individual mandate in December’s tax reform law.
The senator’s daughter Meghan McCain said earlier this spring that her father hopes to return to Capitol Hill by the summer.
Last Monday, she reported on ABC’s “The View” that he is “doing well” and thanked his medical team for all they have been doing.
“My dad’s doing well,” she said on the show. “I want to thank everyone at Mayo Clinic — especially his doctors and nurses. I think it just takes a really special person to become a doctor or a nurse, because I could never do it, and it’s really an amazing thing.”
Senate colleague Jeff Flake tweeted last week that he had visited McCain at his ranch near Sedona, Arizona.
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) April 24, 2018
McCain’s wife Cindy wrote on Monday that former Vice President Joe Biden stopped in over the weekend, as well.
Enjoyed a wonderful visit from @JoeBiden yesterday. Such good family friends. Enjoyed catching up!
— Cindy McCain (@cindymccain) April 30, 2018
On Saturday night, a tweet also briefly appeared from John McCain’s son-in-law, conservative commentator Ben Domenech, but was deleted a little over an hour later, the Arizona Republic reported.
In it, Domenech, who publishes The Federalist, wrote, “John hugged me tonight. He asked me to take care of Meghan. I said I would.”
McCain’s book is slated to be released on May 22.
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