Arizona Republicans wrestle with McCain’s criticism of Trump — and his iconic vote on health care
In Washington DC on Friday, thousands of people lined up in the sweltering heat to pay their respects to the late Sen. John McCain, whose body was lying in-state at the Capitol as part of a memorial service. McCain — the legendary Senator who represented Arizona in the upper chamber for more than three decades — is only the 31st person to ever be honored in this way.
Those waiting to commemorate the venerated Republican lawmaker came from across the political spectrum and used words like “hero,” “patriot” and “icon,” to describe him.
“He’s an American hero first and foremost. He was a lion of the Senate,” said Griffin Namin, a college student based in DC. “I think every child growing up should learn the story of John McCain. He truly is an icon for America, democracy around the world. Anyone who wants to learn about heroes should learn about John McCain.”
“I think he was someone who totally cared about our country, about the individuals who lived here,” said Brigid Banasiewicz, an Independent from Virginia Beach. “He’s a true patriot.”
Their assessments of his tenure marked a sharp contrast with those of some Arizona Republicans, who have much more complicated feelings about the legacy McCain left behind. While a number of Arizonan conservatives admire McCain’s bipartisan efforts and contributions to their state, it’s not exactly that clear-cut for all of his former constituents — many of whom said they wrestled with his critiques of Trump as well as the contentious vote he made on the Affordable Care Act last yea