Can Trump Cross A Line? Why John McCain Is A War Hero
Appearing on Saturday at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, Donald Trump in reference to John McCain:
“He’s a war hero ’cause he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”
Erick Erickson summarizes:
It is not because McCain was captured that he was a war hero. What makes McCain a war hero is that he could have used his father’s ties and position to get released from the Hanoi Hilton. He could have leaked American secrets. He could have readily been a propaganda tool for the North Vietnamese as they released an Admiral’s son to a spectacle of good will.
Instead, John McCain stayed a prisoner of war for over five years, was repeated and savagely beaten and tortured, and did not yield to his captors. That is why he is a war hero. McCain declined efforts to release him as long as there were others still in the Hanoi Hilton. While there he worked to keep the morale of other captives up.
I don’t understand why calling Mexican people drug dealers and rapists drew muddled responses (Of course I do), but the status of an octogenarian senator’s altruistic actions ellicited unequivocal rebukes, but that’s politics for you. The response from the other candidates was swift and severe.
“Enough with the slanderous attacks,” Jeb Bush tweeted. “@SenJohnMcCain and all our veterans – particularly POWs have earned our respect and admiration.”
“John McCain is an American hero. I have nothing but respect for his service to our country,” tweeted Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. “After Donald Trump spends six years in a POW camp, he can weigh in on John McCain’s service,” he added in a second tweet.
”.@SenJohnMcCain is an American hero & all POW’s deserve our nation’s highest debt of gratitude. @realDonaldTrump’s comments are disgraceful,” tweeted former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
“As a fellow veteran I respect @SenJohnMcCain because he volunteered to serve his country. I cannot say the same about Mr. @realDonaldTrump,” Perry added. He then called in a statement for Trump to drop out of the race.
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close friend of McCain’s, tweeted, “If there was ever any doubt that @realDonaldTrump should not be our commander in chief, this stupid statement should end all doubt.” He added: “At the heart of @realDonaldTrump statement is a lack of respect for those who have served – a disqualifying characteristic to be president.”
At a campaign event in Sioux City, Iowa, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker called McCain “an American hero.” At a press gaggle afterwards, he said of Trump, “I unequivocally denounce him.”
Rick Santorum defended McCain while declining to directly condemn Trump, tweeting, “.@SenJohnMcCain is an American hero, period.”
Sean Spicer, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee, likewise tweeted: “.@SenJohnMcCain is an American hero because he served his country and sacrificed more than most can imagine. Period.”
The only thing we have learned is that Prisoners of War rank higher in GOP presidential primary politics than Mexicans. Equality for some I suppose. With that being said, I hope this does not derail the Donald from the debates. That will be must see TV.