Trump is coming under fire for his insulting disrespect of the late senator.
In his first public appearance since the death of Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Trump crossed his arms and stubbornly refused to answer a series of questions about the late senator and war hero.
During a Monday morning photo op to announce a new trade deal with Mexico, Trump invited reporters to watch him spend about 20 minutes speaking with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto via speakerphone.
But as the photo op was concluding, ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl loudly asked Trump, "Any thoughts on John McCain?"
Trump folded his arms, scowled, and said "Thank you" to dismiss the reporters.
"Any thoughts on John McCain, sir?" Karl asked again, as press aides shouted for the reporters to leave. "Any thoughts on the legacy of John McCain?"
Trump continued to ignore the questions as the reporters were ushered out.
Trump's performance is in keeping with his immature behavior both before and after McCain's death from brain cancer over the weekend.
As a prospective Reform Party candidate in 1999, Trump said he didn’t think McCain should be considered a war hero just because he had been captured.
Trump infamously renewed that insulting attack during the 2016 presidential campaign — and when he was criticized for it, Trump whined that McCain had been “disloyal” to him.
Trump also attacked McCain for withdrawing his endorsement after a recording was released of Trump bragging about committing sexual assault. Trump bitterly tweeted that “the very foul mouthed Sen. John McCain … dropped me over locker room remarks!”
And after McCain joined 48 Democrats and two other Republicans in voting down Trumpcare, Trump began attacking McCain at speeches and rallies — including cruelly mocking the senator’s arm movements, which are restricted because of the torture he suffered as a prisoner of war.
But even after McCain passed away on Saturday, Trump could not bring himself to say a kind word about the man himself, instead delivering a message of condolence to McCain's family that made no mention of McCain's life or legacy.
Trump then violated traditional protocol by returning flags at the White House to full mast less than 48 hours after McCain's death.
Trump's refusal to answer questions about McCain reveals the glaring differences between the two men.
McCain served his country as a prisoner of war, even refusing early release until his fellow prisoners were freed. Meanwhile, Trump lacks the courage to even say McCain's name out loud.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.