FILE - In this Oct. 25, 2017 file photo, Senate Armed Services Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., pauses before speaking to reporters during a meeting of the National Defense Authorization Act conferees, on Capitol Hill in Washington. A White House official dismissed a view expressed by Sen. McCain about President Donald Trump’s CIA nominee, saying Thursday, May 10, 2018, at a staff meeting that “it doesn’t matter” because “he’s dying anyway,” two people in the room told The Associated Press. Kelly Sadler was discussing McCain’s opposition to Trump’s pick for CIA director, Gina Haspel, when she made the comment. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

McCain Irrelevant, ‘He’s Dying Anyway,’ White House aide reportedly says

AP sources: A White House official dismissed a view expressed by Sen. McCain, says ‘he’s dying’

A White House official dismissed Sen. John McCain’s opposition to President Donald Trump’s CIA nominee, saying “it doesn’t matter” because “he’s dying anyway,” two people in the room told The Associated Press.

Kelly Sadler was discussing McCain’s opposition to Trump’s pick for CIA director, Gina Haspel, at a staff meeting on Thursday when she made the comment, according to the two people. They were not authorized to discuss internal deliberations and spoke to AP on condition of anonymity.

The White House did not dispute the remark. In a statement, they said, “We respect Senator McCain’s service to our nation and he and his family are in our prayers during this difficult time.”

The Hill newspaper first reported the comment.

The 81-year-old Arizona Republican, who has spent three decades in the Senate, was diagnosed in July with glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer. He left Washington in December and underwent surgery last month for an infection.

Sadler is a special assistant to the president. She did not respond to a request for comment Thursday evening.

McCain’s wife, Cindy, responded with a tweet tagged to Sadler, “May I remind you my husband has a family, 7 children and 5 grandchildren.”

Sen. McCain, a Navy pilot who was beaten in captivity during the Vietnam War, has urged his fellow senators to reject Haspel. He said Wednesday that he believes she’s a patriot who loves the country but “her refusal to acknowledge torture’s immorality is disqualifying.”

Haspel faced grilling Wednesday by the Senate Intelligence Committee about her role overseeing some CIA operations after the Sept. 11 attacks. She told senators that she doesn’t believe torture works as an interrogation technique.

Related: Trump signals changes to US interrogation, detention policy

As for the president, he and McCain have had a troubled relationship.

As a GOP presidential candidate in 2015, Trump said McCain was “not a war hero” because he was captured in Vietnam, adding, “I like people who weren’t captured.”

Last July, McCain became the deciding vote against the GOP health care repeal with a dramatic thumbs-down. Trump later told the Conservative Political Action Conference that “except for one Senator, who came into a room at three o’clock in the morning and went like that” —Trump gave a thumbs-down — “we would have had health care (reform), too.”

The crowd booed, and Trump added, “I won’t use his name.”

Related: Trump revisits Charlottesville comments in angry tirade

___

Zeke Miller And Jill Colvin, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

City stamps rezoning approval for Merridale Cidery expansion in Victoria

Owner expects doors open by fall 2019 in Dockside Green neighbourhood

North Island Tour De Rock rider Benjamin Leah leads team to Port Hardy

“You don’t have issues and problems when you look at these kids and how much they’re going through.”

Two to hospital after University of Victoria sailing mishap

Wind gusts capsize boat of recreational club sailors

Victoria’s deaf community advocates for different sign languages to be recognized on federal accessibility act

Advocates also want Indigenous Sign Language to be recognized on the Indigenous Language Act

Transport Canada announces funds for pollutant clean up in Victoria Park, removal of abandoned boats

Contaminants at Laurel Point Park will be removed starting at the end of September

United Way asks Victoria to share local love

2018 campaign aims to raise another $5M

5 things to do this weekend in and around Greater Victoria

Sooke Apple Fest returns, Saanich lights up with lantern festival and anarchists unite for downtown book fair

B.C. students send books to displaced students of Hornby Island school fire

Maple Ridge elementary school teacher says students learned about acts of kindness

Trump drains oxygen from Trudeau foreign policy with PM, Freeland bound for UN

A lot has changed since the Liberals came to power in Canada in 2015

Emergency crews investigate small sulphuric acid spill in Kootenays

IRM states a small volume of less than one cup and three dime-sized drips were leaked from carrier

Victoria resident barred from trading securities for fraud

Larry Keith Davis used money from an investor to pay personal bills

Family, friends of B.C murder victim want killer sent back to max security facility

Group wants convicted murderer Walter Ramsay sent back to a maximum security facility

Most Read