Despite the icon, this item begins with a thumbs down — to Donald Trump who reportedly has been physically mocking Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, in private for his role in killing the Republicans’ last-ditch attempt at repealing the Affordable Care Act this week. The president, according to the news site Axios, reportedly has been imitating the thumbs down motion McCain made as he cast a no vote in July on an earlier Obamacare repeal bill. The motion was somewhat awkward because McCain has difficulty moving his arm due to injuries he sustained after his plane was shot down during the Vietnam War, and he was held as a prisoner of war for more than five years. “What more must my family be put through right now?” tweeted McCain’s daughter, Meghan McCain, who is now a Fox News host. “This is abhorrent.”
Trump has made no secret of his displeasure with McCain, whom he blamed as “the reason” no repeal bill has passed.
On that point, we certainly agree with the president, but we see it as a cause for praise not ridicule. McCain ended up being the first of three Republicans to take a stand against the Obamacare repeal bill in July. And he was one of the first to oppose recent legislation from GOP Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana that would have resulted in the loss of health coverage for millions of Americans.
What makes McCain’s opposition all the more heroic is that he is dealing with his own health crisis. McCain has been diagnosed with primary glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. McCain told “60 Minutes” last week that his prognosis was “very poor.”
Those at risk of losing their health coverage have many things to be thankful for this week. McCain is one of them. Thumbs up to this hero who faced down threats, both foreign and domestic.