According to Cindy McCain, her late husband, Senator John McCain, would not recognize today’s Republican Party.
The widow of Arizona’s former senator joined MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on Wednesday, a day before President Joe Biden posthumously awarded Senator McCain the nation’s highest civil honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
“I don’t believe my husband would recognize it,” she said of the current state of the GOP. “I do know one thing, he would be fighting like the dickens to pull it back together and bring it back to what it was during previous Republican administrations and previous administrations as well.”
Long considered a “Republican in Name Only” — or “RINO” — by many conservative Americans, McCain was known prior to his death in 2018 from brain cancer for such “maverick” acts as being the conservative that rescued former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Healthcare Act, the Daily Mail reports.
Following her husband’s death, Cindy McCain endorsed Joe Biden in the 2020 race for the White House. As president, Biden then appointed her to be his ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture.
And on Thursday, Biden presented her with McCain’s posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom, joking that the late senator still “owes” him for introducing him to Cindy.
“Best thing we ever did for John,” Biden said. “The very best.”
Here is Cindy McCain accepting the Presidential Medal of Honor for her late husband and former U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona.
— KTAR News 92.3 (@KTAR923) July 7, 2022
Biden and John McCain were considered to be close friends during their time together in the Senate, and it was he and wife Jill Biden who, 50 years ago, introduced John to Cindy while they were on a trip in Hawaii.
But despite the long and cozy relationship with the Bidens and John McCain’s constant criticism of former President Donald Trump while he was in office, Cindy McCain insists she is still a Republican.
“I’m still a Republican,” she told Mitchell. “I believe in the party, and I believe in what we stand for, but right now we’ve lost our way.”
“And so I’m hoping as the years go on, perhaps we can right ourselves and do what Republicans do best,” she continued, “and that is work for smaller government but work in a bipartisan fashion.”
She then gushed over fellow RINO Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) and her efforts to bury Trump via the Jan. 6 Committee.
“She’s an amazing person,” McCain said, “and I have talked with her both on the phone and via email, et cetera, during this time.”
Cheney is currently praying she can keep her Congressional seat. According to polls, she is currently trailing Trump-endorsed GOP opponent Harriet Hageman.
But Cheney, argued McCain, is doing “the right thing.”
“I just think her strength and her ability to look beyond the now and look for what’s good for the country, and it may harm her in the end, her political aspirations,” she said. “But she can sleep at night and know that she did the right thing.”
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