Tonight, Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, two of the most vocal Republican critics of Donald Trump, will be dining at the White House. In advance of this hypocritical photo-op, here is what they have been saying about President Trump as a reminder that you can’t believe the rhetoric from any one at the table tonight.
“Senator Graham thinks Trump’s tweets undermine his ability to govern and Senator McCain basically called him a dictator. What you’ll see after tonight is purely political doublespeak that will again prove none of these men can be taken seriously when it comes to their empty rhetoric and so-called principles. Hope they like meatloaf,” said Trump War Room Rapid Response Director Emily Aden.
McCain On Trump Calling The Press The Enemy: “That’s How Dictators Get Started.” “TODD: Do you believe the press is the enemy? You believe any group of Americans are the enemy of another group of Americans? JOHN MCCAIN: I was talking about the period as, you know, of the new world order. A fundamental part of that new world order was a free press. I hate the press. I hate you especially. But the fact is I, we need you. We need a free press. We must have it. It’s vital. If you want to preserve– I’m very serious now– If you want to preserve democracy as we know it, you have to have a free and many times adversarial press. And without it, I am afraid that we would lose so much of our individual liberties over time. That’s how dictators get started.” [NBC: Meet the Press, 2/19/17]
Graham Said Trump’s Comments On Voter Fraud “Will Undermine His Ability To Govern This Country.” “To continue to suggest that the 2016 election was conducted in a fashion that millions of people voted illegally undermines faith in our democracy, it’s not coming from a candidate for the office it’s coming from a man who holds the office. I am begging the President to share the information you have about this or please stop saying it. As a matter of fact, I’d like you to do more than stop saying it, it like for him to come forward and say ‘having looked at it I’m confident that the election was fair and accurate and people who voted legally.’ Because if he doesn’t do that it will undermine his ability to govern this country. [NBC: Nightly News, 1/24/17]
McCain Said He “Strongly Disagrees” With Trump On Moral Equivalence With Russia. “I already stated last week after the President United State equated the United States on the same moral plane as Vladimir Putin, I strongly disagree.” [CNN, 2/13/17]
- McCain Said Anyone Who Thinks There Is Moral Equivalence Between Russia And The U.S. “Is Either Terribly Misinformed Or Incredibly Biased.” “Vladimir knew that (Russian President Vladimir) Putin is a killer. And he’s a killer. And he might very well be the next target. Vladimir knew there was no moral equivalence between the United States and Putin’s Russia. I repeat, there is no moral equivalence between that butcher and thug and KGB colonel and the United States of America, the country that Ronald Reagan used to call a shining city on a hill. And to allege some kind of moral equivalence between the two is either terribly misinformed or incredibly biased. Neither can be accurate in any way.” [Senate Floor Speech, 2/7/17]
- McCain Attacked Those “Flirting With Authoritarianism And Romanticizing It As Our Moral Equivalent.” “What would von Kleist’s generation say if they saw our world today? I fear that much about it would be all-too-familiar to them, and they would be alarmed by it. They would be alarmed by an increasing turn away from universal values and toward old ties of blood, and race, and sectarianism. They would be alarmed by the hardening resentment we see toward immigrants, and refugees, and minority groups, especially Muslims. They would be alarmed by the growing inability, and even unwillingness, to separate truth from lies. They would be alarmed that more and more of our fellow citizens seem to be flirting with authoritarianism and romanticizing it as our moral equivalent. But what would alarm them most, I think, is a sense that many of our peoples, including in my own country, are giving up on the West … that they see it as a bad deal that we may be better off without … and that while Western nations still have the power to maintain our world order, it is unclear whether we have the will.” [Remarks to Munich Security Conference, 2/17/17]
Graham Said Trump’s Wiretapping Tweet Is “Earth-shattering.” “The tweet today by President Trump was earth-shattering to me. Just think about what he claims. He claims the former President illegally wiretapped his campaign. We need to get to the bottom of that don’t you agree.” [Town Hall in Clemson, NC, 3/4/17]
Graham Said Trump Needs To “Knock It Off” On Voter Fraud Claims Or “People Are Going To Start Doubting You As A Person.” “I wasn’t there but if the president of the United States is claiming that 3 to 3.5 million people voted illegally that shakes confidence in our democracy. He needs to disclose why he believes that. I don’t believe that. It is most inappropriate thing for the president to say without proof. Al Gore walked away based on 500 or 600 votes. Richard Nixon lost a close election. We are talking about a man who won the election. And seems to be obsessed with the idea that he could not have lost the popular vote without cheating and fraud. So I would urge the president to knock this off. This is the greatest democracy in earth, you are the leader of the free world, and people are going to start doubting you as a person if you keep making accusations against our electoral system without justification. This is going to erode his ability to govern this country if he does not stop it. [CNN: CNN Newsroom, 1/24/17]
Published: Apr 24, 2017