Trump signs McCain defense measure, doesn't thank McCain

President Donald Trump thanked multiple members of Congress involved in passing the John S. McCain National ...

Posted: Aug 14, 2018 12:39 PM
Updated: Aug 14, 2018 12:39 PM

President Donald Trump thanked multiple members of Congress involved in passing the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act at a signing ceremony at Fort Drum, New York, Monday, with one major exception: the senator for whom the bill is named.

"We would not be here for today's signing ceremony without the dedicated efforts without the dedicated members of Congress who worked so hard to pass the National Defense Authorization Act," Trump said, namechecking Republican members of Congress including Rep. Elise Stefanik, who spoke briefly and represents the district containing Fort Drum, as well as Don Bacon, Dan Donovan, Joe Wilson and Martha McSally.

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Trump, who did not serve in the military himself, has previously attacked McCain's record of service, saying the Vietnam veteran and former prisoner of war is "not a war hero" because he was captured.

"He is not a war hero," Trump told pollster Frank Luntz, who was hosting a July 2015 question-and-answer session at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa.

"He is a war hero," Luntz interjected.

"He is a war hero because he was captured?" Trump said, cutting him off. "I like people that weren't captured, OK? I hate to tell you. He is a war hero because he was captured. OK, you can have -- I believe perhaps he is a war hero."

Trump has since acknowledged that McCain is a hero, but refused to apologize in subsequent interviews.

McCain has been one of the administration's most outspoken Republican critics.

The President hasn't backed down on his attacks on McCain, who was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a rare brain cancer, over a year ago. Trump has referenced McCain several times on the campaign trail over the past months without directly naming him, hitting the Arizona senator for his health care vote.

Just hours after the signing ceremony, Trump continued the criticism at a campaign event for Rep. Claudia Tenney in Utica, New York.

"One of our wonderful senators said 'thumbs down' at two o'clock in the morning," he said.

Although Trump claimed the Senate was one vote away, in reality, the vote was only to go to conference with the House on the Senate's "skinny repeal."

McCain's daughter, conservative commentator Meghan McCain, called Trump's comments "gross and pathetic."

John McCain, who is the Senate Armed Services Committee chairman, spearheaded efforts to pass the defense spending bill in the Senate.

"I am particularly humbled that my colleagues chose to designate legislation of such importance in my name. Serving on the Senate Armed Services Committee has been an incredibly meaningful experience since my first days on Capitol Hill," McCain said in a press release when the bill was passed earlier this month.

The bill's formal name is the "John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019," and it is listed on the White House daily guidance as such, but Trump simply called it the "National Defense Authorization Act" at Fort Drum.

In mostly scripted remarks Monday, Trump called the measure "the most significant investment in our military in our war fighters in modern history," saying he was "very proud to be a big, big part of it."

He also touted the $716 billion in forthcoming 2019 fiscal year military funding, his administration's economic success, and the United States' "leadership in space."

CORRECTION: Rep. Don Bacon's name has been corrected in this story.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 115088

Reported Deaths: 3255
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7973177
DeSoto703979
Harrison522384
Jackson457884
Rankin394086
Madison383194
Lee357380
Forrest304678
Jones292484
Washington258399
Lafayette250443
Lauderdale2478135
Lamar225538
Oktibbeha202454
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Neshoba1849111
Lowndes179962
Panola170040
Leflore167187
Sunflower162349
Warren154855
Monroe150673
Pontotoc147220
Marshall143129
Lincoln140157
Pike138456
Copiah137536
Scott125429
Coahoma124937
Grenada122638
Yazoo122234
Simpson121549
Union118825
Tate116839
Leake115041
Holmes114760
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Pearl River113660
Adams108544
Prentiss106120
Wayne101722
Alcorn100112
George99218
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Marion95042
Tippah90322
Newton86627
Chickasaw85526
Tallahatchie84526
Winston84121
Hancock84028
Tishomingo81241
Attala79426
Clarke75851
Clay69321
Jasper68717
Walthall63927
Calhoun62612
Noxubee59817
Smith59416
Montgomery54923
Yalobusha54514
Claiborne53716
Tunica53517
Lawrence51814
Perry49423
Carroll49312
Greene47818
Stone47514
Humphreys43816
Amite42513
Quitman4206
Jefferson Davis41011
Webster37613
Benton3416
Wilkinson33820
Kemper32615
Sharkey28514
Jefferson27610
Franklin2423
Choctaw2086
Issaquena1074
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 155915

Reported Deaths: 2674
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson23129377
Mobile16849315
Tuscaloosa10296140
Montgomery10197197
Madison928096
Shelby733863
Baldwin663769
Lee653465
Calhoun456761
Marshall438150
Etowah426551
Houston414834
Morgan412035
DeKalb338829
Elmore320053
St. Clair292542
Limestone284230
Walker277292
Talladega265335
Cullman244024
Lauderdale226242
Jackson214915
Franklin205231
Autauga204831
Colbert200532
Russell19443
Blount192525
Chilton186932
Dallas186527
Coffee176311
Dale175151
Covington174029
Escambia172530
Chambers135044
Clarke134317
Pike133513
Tallapoosa131787
Marion107629
Barbour10319
Marengo100822
Butler100740
Winston92213
Geneva9007
Lawrence85032
Pickens84718
Bibb82814
Randolph82316
Hale76730
Washington74412
Clay74112
Cherokee73314
Lowndes70928
Henry7086
Bullock64817
Monroe64610
Crenshaw60630
Perry5896
Fayette57413
Wilcox56712
Conecuh56113
Cleburne5568
Macon53420
Lamar4905
Sumter47221
Choctaw39012
Greene34216
Coosa2033
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