Republican Senator John McCain, who endured years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam before coming to Washington – has died after a battle with brain cancer at the age of 81.
McCain was an elder statesman and self-styled political ‘maverick’, admired in both parties for touting civility and compromise in an era of toxic partisanship.
The Arizona Senator who ran unsuccessfully for president against Barack Obama in 2008 was a frequent critic of President Donald Trump, as well as a target of his attacks.
As recently as July, McCain ripped into Trump for his performance at a press conference in Helsinki with Russian President Vladimir Putin… releasing a statement calling it “disgraceful”.
The son of an admiral… McCain had been in the public eye since the 1960s, when the Navy aviator was shot down during the Vietnam War and tortured by his communist captors.
In more than 3 decades on Capitol Hill, McCain focused on foreign affairs and built a generally conservative record but built a reputation for working across party lines.
McCain was the central figure in one of the most dramatic legislative failures of Trump’s presidency when he returned to Washington shortly after his cancer diagnosis and cast a decisive vote to scuttle a Trump-backed bill to repeal Obamacare.
In his recently released memoir, “The Restless Wave” McCain expressed his hope that the polarized political climate will, quote “return to the purposes and practices that distinguish our history.”