Meghan McCain: My dad was defined by love

Meghan McCain pays tribute to her father Sen. John McCain by remembering him as a loving and devoted father.

Posted: Sep 3, 2018 11:57 AM
Updated: Sep 3, 2018 11:57 AM

Washington luminaries, former presidents and the family of John McCain gathered Saturday at Washington National Cathedral to honor and remember the late senator in a grand display of pomp and unity in the nation's capital.

One figure who was notably absent from Saturday's event: President Donald Trump, with whom McCain frequently feuded and whom he did not want to attend his memorial services. Instead, Trump visited one of his golf courses in Sterling, Virginia, and tweeted on several occasions about unrelated topics, including about trade negotiations with Canada.

"We gather here to mourn the passing of American greatness. The real thing, not cheap rhetoric from men who will never come near the sacrifice he gave so willingly," Meghan McCain, one of the late senator's daughters, said in her remarks. The barb was one of several she interspersed in an emotional remembrance, during which she struggled to fight back tears.

"The America of John McCain has no need to be made great again, because America was always great," she said at one point to sustained applause inside the cathedral.

The ceremony featured tributes from Republican former President George W. Bush, who prevailed over McCain in the race for the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, and Democratic former President Barack Obama, who ran against McCain in the 2008 presidential election and won.

Bush remembered McCain in his remarks as "above all, a man with a code," saying that "he lived by a set of public virtues that brought strength and purpose to his life and to his country."

The former President said that the late senator "was courageous" and "honest, no matter whom it offended," adding that even "presidents were not spared."

Display of unity

The remarks from former Democratic and Republican presidents who were once rivals to McCain sent a message of unity and bipartisanship at a time when Washington is deeply divided.

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger said at the service that "the world will be lonelier without John McCain," but that, "even in his parting, John has bestowed on us a much-needed moment of unity."

Former Sen. Joe Lieberman, a Democrat-turned-Independent, recalled his friendship with McCain and spoke at length about how McCain had wanted to name him as a running mate during his 2008 presidential campaign.

Lieberman recalled questioning whether it could work. "When he first talked to me about it, I said, 'You know John, I'm really honored, but I don't see how you can do it,'" he said, remembering a conversation he had with McCain.

He said that the late senator responded with some impatience, saying: "That's the point Joe ... You're a Democrat, I'm a Republican, we could give our country the bipartisan leadership it needs for a change."

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who was McCain's running mate in the 2008 presidential election was not invited to any of the memorial services.

Democratic former Vice President Joe Biden, who delivered an emotional eulogy for McCain at a memorial service in Arizona on Thursday, served as a pallbearer on Saturday.

Actor Warren Beatty, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, former Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin and former chief of staff to McCain Mark Salter are also serving as pallbearers, among others.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a close friend of McCain's, and McCain's children Jimmy and Sidney McCain are taking part in the ceremony as well.

The President's daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner are both attending the ceremony. Former Democratic President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are also at the service.

The Right Rev. Mariann Edgar Budde, the Episcopal bishop of Washington, delivered a blessing during the service.

Week of memorials

The service followed a public procession that brought McCain's body from the US Capitol to the cathedral. The motorcade stopped along the way at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, where Cindy McCain, the late senator's wife, laid a wreath in memory of those who served in the Vietnam War.

McCain, who died at the age of 81 last Saturday after a lengthy battle with brain cancer, was an iconic figure in US politics. The Arizona Republican leaves behind a storied legacy of serving his country in Congress and in the military as a naval pilot.

The service at Washington National Cathedral is one of several events honoring McCain's life this week.

On Thursday, a memorial service was held in Phoenix and on Friday, a ceremony was held in the US Capitol, where McCain's body was lain in state. On Sunday, a private service will take place at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and then his body will be laid to rest in the US Naval Academy Cemetery.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 348496

Reported Deaths: 7556
CountyCasesDeaths
Hinds24427446
DeSoto23439283
Harrison21066330
Rankin15704292
Jackson15597252
Madison11114227
Lee10855179
Jones9181169
Forrest8960160
Lauderdale8008244
Lamar719489
Lowndes7167151
Lafayette6604125
Washington5629140
Pearl River5336153
Oktibbeha500998
Bolivar4989134
Warren4803128
Panola4801112
Marshall4725106
Pontotoc451473
Hancock438088
Union437179
Monroe4361137
Neshoba4351181
Lincoln4212116
Pike3711113
Leflore3668125
Tate354688
Alcorn353974
Sunflower350794
Adams345388
Scott344676
Yazoo342476
Copiah329868
Simpson325191
Itawamba316780
Coahoma314985
Tippah312568
Prentiss301863
Covington300184
Marion288681
Leake287875
Wayne280043
George276751
Grenada271388
Newton265964
Tishomingo240370
Winston237884
Stone234138
Jasper233148
Attala228173
Chickasaw220860
Holmes202274
Clay201154
Clarke188180
Tallahatchie185442
Calhoun183032
Smith182635
Yalobusha173141
Walthall149049
Lawrence145226
Greene141835
Amite138643
Noxubee136735
Perry135638
Montgomery133744
Carroll126831
Webster122632
Jefferson Davis118734
Tunica115827
Benton107225
Claiborne105731
Kemper103529
Humphreys101733
Franklin88324
Quitman85619
Choctaw82819
Wilkinson79332
Jefferson71928
Sharkey51818
Issaquena1736
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 589110

Reported Deaths: 11536
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson856031591
Mobile49268864
Madison37603533
Shelby27362257
Tuscaloosa27208465
Montgomery26252627
Baldwin25567329
Lee17260181
Calhoun15429334
Morgan15199291
Etowah14981370
Marshall13136235
Houston12112293
Elmore10946219
St. Clair10793252
Limestone10750158
Cullman10566205
Lauderdale10266254
DeKalb9517192
Talladega8972188
Walker7817288
Autauga7585114
Jackson7406117
Blount7382139
Colbert6721142
Coffee6382132
Dale5673117
Russell481343
Chilton4785117
Covington4763125
Franklin459081
Tallapoosa4525156
Escambia443883
Chambers3968125
Dallas3749163
Clarke371663
Marion3465107
Pike333079
Lawrence3267100
Winston299373
Bibb290965
Geneva285983
Marengo262767
Barbour252061
Pickens245762
Butler241472
Hale235978
Fayette227265
Henry214845
Monroe203041
Randolph201944
Cherokee199548
Washington185239
Macon170752
Crenshaw169458
Clay166559
Cleburne161545
Lamar151238
Lowndes145855
Wilcox132331
Bullock126542
Conecuh122132
Coosa118429
Perry110828
Sumter110433
Greene99137
Choctaw64425
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