|Nick Name:||McNasty, The white tornado|
|Height:||178 cm (5' 11'')|
|Birth Day:||August 29, 1936|
|Height:||178 cm (5' 11'')|
|Eye Color:||Hazel Green|
|Hair Color:||Semi Bald (white)|
The 2008 Republican presidential nominee who was a prisoner of war for five years during the Vietnam War. He became a United States Senator from Arizona in 1987. He was known for his advocacy of campaign finance reform in the Senate and most notably co-wrote the 2002 McCain-Feingold Act.
Real Estate Holdings: The McCain family has considerable real estate holdings. Prior to John's death, the family was in possession of at least 7 properties. Not long after her husband's death, John's widow Cindy purchased another property in Phoenix for $2.28 million.
Real Estate Holdings: The McCain family has considerable real estate holdings. Prior to John's death, the family was in possession of at least 7 properties. Not long after her husband's death, John's widow Cindy purchased another property in Phoenix for $2.28 million.
While attending the United States Naval Academy, he became a lightweight boxer.
John Sidney McCain III was born on August 29, 1936, at Coco Solo Naval Air Station in the Panama Canal Zone, to naval officer John S. McCain Jr. and Roberta (Wright) McCain. He had an older sister Sandy and a younger brother Joe. At that time, the Panama Canal was under U.S. control.
As a result, he attended a total of about 20 schools. In 1951, the family settled in Northern Virginia, and McCain attended Episcopal High School, a private preparatory boarding school in Alexandria. He excelled at wrestling and graduated in 1954. He referred to himself as an Episcopalian as recently as June 2007, after which date he said he came to identify as a Baptist.
Following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, McCain entered the United States Naval Academy, where he was a friend and informal leader for many of his classmates and sometimes stood up for targets of bullying. He also fought as a lightweight boxer. McCain did well in academic subjects that interested him, such as literature and history, but studied only enough to pass subjects that gave him difficulty, such as mathematics. He came into conflict with higher-ranking personnel and did not always obey the rules, which contributed to a low class rank (894 of 899), despite a high IQ. McCain graduated in 1958.
McCain began his early military career when he was commissioned as an ensign, and started two and a half years of training at Pensacola to become a naval aviator. While there, he earned a reputation as a man who partied. He completed flight school in 1960, and became a naval pilot of ground-attack aircraft; he was assigned to A-1 Skyraider squadrons aboard the aircraft carriers USS Intrepid and USS Enterprise in the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas. McCain began as a sub-par flier who was at times careless and reckless; during the early to mid-1960s, two of his flight missions crashed, and a third mission collided with power lines, but he received no major injuries. His aviation skills improved over time, and he was seen as a good pilot, albeit one who tended to "push the envelope" in his flying.
On July 3, 1965, McCain was 28 when he married Carol Shepp, who had worked as a runway model and secretary. McCain adopted her two young children, Douglas and Andrew. He and Carol then had a daughter whom they named Sidney.
On July 29, 1967, McCain was a lieutenant commander when he was near the center of the USS Forrestal fire. He escaped from his burning jet and was trying to help another pilot escape when a bomb exploded; McCain was struck in the legs and chest by fragments. The ensuing fire killed 134 sailors and took 24 hours to control. With the Forrestal out of commission, McCain volunteered for assignment with the USS Oriskany, another aircraft carrier employed in Operation Rolling Thunder. There, he was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star Medal for missions flown over North Vietnam.
McCain was taken prisoner of war on October 26, 1967. He was flying his 23rd bombing mission over North Vietnam when his A-4E Skyhawk was shot down by a missile over Hanoi. McCain fractured both arms and a leg when he ejected from the aircraft, and nearly drowned after he parachuted into Trúc Bạch Lake. Some North Vietnamese pulled him ashore, then others crushed his shoulder with a rifle butt and bayoneted him. McCain was then transported to Hanoi's main Hỏa Lò Prison, nicknamed the "Hanoi Hilton".
McCain spent six weeks in the hospital, where he received marginal care. He had lost 50 pounds (23 kg), he was in a chest cast, and his gray hair had turned white. McCain was sent to a different camp on the outskirts of Hanoi. In December 1967, McCain was placed in a cell with two other Americans, who did not expect him to live more than a week. In March 1968, McCain was placed into solitary confinement, where he remained for two years.
Beginning in August 1968, McCain was subjected to a program of severe torture. He was bound and beaten every two hours; this punishment occurred at the same time that he was suffering from heat exhaustion and dysentery. Further injuries brought McCain to “the point of suicide,” but his preparations were interrupted by guards. Eventually, McCain made an anti-U.S. propaganda "confession." He had always felt that his statement was dishonorable, but as he later wrote, "I had learned what we all learned over there: every man has his breaking point. I had reached mine." Many U.S. POWs were tortured and maltreated in order to extract "confessions" and propaganda statements; virtually all of them eventually yielded something to their captors. McCain received two to three beatings weekly because of his continued refusal to sign additional statements.
McCain was reunited with his family when he returned to the United States. His wife Carol had been severely injured by an automobile accident in December 1969. She was then four inches shorter, in a wheelchair or on crutches, and substantially heavier than when he had last seen her. As a returned POW, he became a celebrity of sorts.
McCain was a prisoner of war in North Vietnam for five and a half years, until his release on March 14, 1973, along with 108 other prisoners of war. His wartime injuries left him permanently incapable of raising his arms above his head. After the war, McCain, accompanied by his family and his wife Cindy, returned to the site on a few occasions in efforts of trying to come to terms with what had happened to him there during his capture.
McCain underwent treatment for his injuries that included months of physical therapy. He attended the National War College at Fort McNair in Washington, D.C. during 1973–1974. He was rehabilitated by late 1974, and his flight status was reinstated. In 1976, he became Commanding Officer of a training squadron that was stationed in Florida. He improved the unit's flight readiness and safety records, and won the squadron its first-ever Meritorious Unit Commendation. During this period in Florida, he had extramarital affairs, and his marriage began to falter, about which he later stated: "The blame was entirely mine".
Throughout the summer of 2008, Obama typically led McCain in national polls by single-digit margins, and also led in several key swing states. McCain reprised his familiar underdog role, which was due at least in part to the overall challenges Republicans faced in the election year. McCain accepted public financing for the general election campaign, and the restrictions that go with it, while criticizing his Democratic opponent for becoming the first major party candidate to opt out of such financing for the general election since the system was implemented in 1976. The Republican's broad campaign theme focused on his experience and ability to lead, compared to Obama's.
McCain served as the Navy's liaison to the U.S. Senate beginning in 1977. In retrospect, he said that this represented his "real entry into the world of politics, and the beginning of my second career as a public servant." His key behind-the-scenes role gained congressional financing for a new supercarrier against the wishes of the Carter administration.
In April 1979, McCain met Cindy Lou Hensley, a teacher from Phoenix, Arizona, whose father had founded a large beer distributorship. They began dating, and he urged his wife, Carol, to grant him a divorce, which she did in February 1980; the uncontested divorce took effect in April 1980. The settlement included two houses, and financial support for her ongoing medical treatments due to her 1969 car accident; they remained on good terms. McCain and Hensley were married on May 17, 1980, with Senators William Cohen and Gary Hart attending as groomsmen. McCain's children did not attend, and several years passed before they reconciled. John and Cindy McCain entered into a prenuptial agreement that kept most of her family's assets under her name; they kept their finances apart, and filed separate income tax returns.
McCain retired from the Navy as a captain on April 1, 1981. He was designated as disabled and awarded a disability pension. Upon leaving the military, he moved to Arizona. His numerous military decorations and awards include: the Silver Star, two Legion of Merits, Distinguished Flying Cross, three Bronze Star Medals, two Purple Hearts, two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medals, and the Prisoner of War Medal.
McCain set his sights on becoming a representative because he was interested in current events, was ready for a new challenge, and had developed political ambitions during his time as Senate liaison. Living in Phoenix, he went to work for Hensley & Co., his new father-in-law Jim Hensley's large Anheuser-Busch beer distributorship. As vice president of public relations at the distributorship, he gained political support among the local business community, meeting powerful figures such as banker Charles Keating Jr., real estate developer Fife Symington III (later Governor of Arizona) and newspaper publisher Darrow "Duke" Tully. In 1982, McCain ran as a Republican for an open seat in Arizona's 1st congressional district, which was being vacated by 30-year incumbent Republican John Jacob Rhodes. A newcomer to the state, McCain was hit with charges of being a carpetbagger. McCain responded to a voter making that charge with what a Phoenix Gazette columnist later described as "the most devastating response to a potentially troublesome political issue I've ever heard":
In 1983, McCain was elected to lead the incoming group of Republican representatives, and was assigned to the House Committee on Interior Affairs. Also that year, he opposed creation of a federal Martin Luther King Jr. Day, but admitted in 2008: "I was wrong and eventually realized that, in time to give full support [in 1990] for a state holiday in Arizona."
At this point, McCain's politics were mainly in line with those of President Ronald Reagan; this included support for Reaganomics, and he was active on Indian Affairs bills. He supported most aspects of the foreign policy of the Reagan administration, including its hardline stance against the Soviet Union and policy towards Central American conflicts, such as backing the Contras in Nicaragua. McCain opposed keeping U.S. Marines deployed in Lebanon, citing unattainable objectives, and subsequently criticized President Reagan for pulling out the troops too late; in the interim, the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing killed hundreds. McCain won re-election to the House easily in 1984, and gained a spot on the House Foreign Affairs Committee. In 1985, he made his first return trip to Vietnam, and also traveled to Chile where he met with its military junta ruler, General Augusto Pinochet.
In 1984, McCain and Cindy had their first child, daughter Meghan, followed two years later by son John IV and in 1988 by son James. In 1991, Cindy brought an abandoned three-month-old girl needing medical treatment to the U.S. from a Bangladeshi orphanage run by Mother Teresa. The McCains decided to adopt her and she was named Bridget.
McCain's Senate career began in January 1987, after he defeated his Democratic opponent, former state legislator Richard Kimball, by 20 percentage points in the 1986 election. McCain succeeded longtime American conservative icon and Arizona fixture Barry Goldwater upon the latter's retirement as U.S. senator from Arizona. In January 1988, McCain voted in favor of the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, and voted to override President Reagan's veto of that legislation the following March.
McCain became embroiled in a scandal during the 1980s, as one of five United States senators comprising the so-called Keating Five. Between 1982 and 1987, McCain had received $112,000 in lawful political contributions from Charles Keating Jr. and his associates at Lincoln Savings and Loan Association, along with trips on Keating's jets that McCain belatedly repaid, in 1989. In 1987, McCain was one of the five senators whom Keating contacted in order to prevent the government's seizure of Lincoln, and McCain met twice with federal regulators to discuss the government's investigation of Lincoln. In 1999, McCain said: "The appearance of it was wrong. It's a wrong appearance when a group of senators appear in a meeting with a group of regulators, because it conveys the impression of undue and improper influence. And it was the wrong thing to do." In the end, McCain was cleared by the Senate Ethics Committee of acting improperly or violating any law or Senate rule, but was mildly rebuked for exercising "poor judgment".
In his 1992 re-election bid, the Keating Five affair was not a major issue, and he won handily, gaining 56 percent of the vote to defeat Democratic community and civil rights activist Claire Sargent and independent former governor, Evan Mecham.
In 1993 and 1994, McCain voted to confirm President Clinton's nominees Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg whom he considered to be qualified for the U.S. Supreme Court. He later explained that "under our Constitution, it is the president's call to make." McCain had also voted to confirm nominees of Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, including Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas.
The term "maverick Republican" became a label frequently applied to McCain, and he also used it himself. In 1993, McCain opposed military operations in Somalia. Another target of his was pork barrel spending by Congress, and he actively supported the Line Item Veto Act of 1996, which gave the president power to veto individual spending items but was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 1998.
McCain attacked what he saw as the corrupting influence of large political contributions—from corporations, labor unions, other organizations, and wealthy individuals—and he made this his signature issue. Starting in 1994, he worked with Democratic Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold on campaign finance reform; their McCain–Feingold bill attempted to put limits on "soft money". The efforts of McCain and Feingold were opposed by some of the moneyed interests targeted, by incumbents in both parties, by those who felt spending limits impinged on free political speech and might be unconstitutional as well, and by those who wanted to counterbalance the power of what they saw as media bias. Despite sympathetic coverage in the media, initial versions of the McCain–Feingold Act were filibustered and never came to a vote.
As a member of the 1991–1993 Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs, chaired by fellow Vietnam War veteran and Democrat, John Kerry, McCain investigated the Vietnam War POW/MIA issue, to determine the fate of U.S. service personnel listed as missing in action during the Vietnam War. The committee's unanimous report stated there was "no compelling evidence that proves that any American remains alive in captivity in Southeast Asia." Helped by McCain's efforts, in 1995 the U.S. normalized diplomatic relations with Vietnam. McCain was vilified by some POW/MIA activists who, despite the committee's unanimous report, believed large numbers of Americans were still held against their will in Southeast Asia. From January 1993 until his death, McCain was Chairman of the International Republican Institute, an organization partly funded by the U.S. government that supports the emergence of political democracy worldwide.
In the 1996 presidential election, McCain was again on the short list of possible vice-presidential picks, this time for Republican nominee Bob Dole. The following year, Time magazine named McCain as one of the "25 Most Influential People in America".
In 1997, McCain became chairman of the powerful Senate Commerce Committee; he was criticized for accepting funds from corporations and businesses under the committee's purview, but in response said the small contributions he received were not part of the big-money nature of the campaign finance problem. McCain took on the tobacco industry in 1998, proposing legislation that would increase cigarette taxes in order to fund anti-smoking campaigns, discourage teenage smokers, increase money for health research studies, and help states pay for smoking-related health care costs. Supported by the Clinton administration but opposed by the industry and most Republicans, the bill failed to gain cloture.
In 1997, Time magazine named McCain as one of the "25 Most Influential People in America". In 1999, McCain shared the Profile in Courage Award with Senator Russ Feingold for their work towards campaign finance reform. The following year, the same pair shared the Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government. In 2005, The Eisenhower Institute awarded McCain the Eisenhower Leadership Prize. The prize recognizes individuals whose lifetime accomplishments reflect Dwight D. Eisenhower's legacy of integrity and leadership. In 2006, the Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award was bestowed upon McCain by the National Park Trust. The same year, McCain was awarded the Henry M. Jackson Distinguished Service Award by the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, in honor of Senator Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson. In 2007, the World Leadership Forum presented McCain with the Policymaker of the Year Award; it is given internationally to someone who has "created, inspired or strongly influenced important policy or legislation". In 2010, President Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgia awarded McCain the Order of National Hero, an award never previously given to a non-Georgian. In 2015, the Kyiv Patriarchate awarded McCain its own version of the Order of St. Vladimir. In 2016, Allegheny College awarded McCain, along with Vice President Joe Biden, its Prize for Civility in Public Life. In August 2016, Petro Poroshenko, the President of Ukraine, awarded McCain with the highest award for foreigners, the Order of Liberty. In 2017, Hashim Thaçi, the President of Kosovo, awarded McCain the "Urdhër i Lirisë" (Order of Freedom) medal for his contribution to the freedom and independence of Kosovo, and its partnership with the U.S. McCain also received the Liberty Medal from the National Constitution Center in 2017. In the spring of 2018 McCain was decorated with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun from the Japanese Emperor for 'strengthening bilateral relations and promoting friendship between Japan and the United States'.
In November 1998, McCain won re-election to a third Senate term; he prevailed in a landslide over his Democratic opponent, environmental lawyer Ed Ranger. In the February 1999 Senate trial following the impeachment of Bill Clinton, McCain voted to convict the president on both the perjury and obstruction of justice counts, saying Clinton had violated his sworn oath of office. In March 1999, McCain voted to approve the NATO bombing campaign against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, saying that the ongoing genocide of the Kosovo War must be stopped and criticizing past Clinton administration inaction. Later in 1999, McCain shared the Profile in Courage Award with Feingold for their work in trying to enact their campaign finance reform, although the bill was still failing repeated attempts to gain cloture.
In his own estimation, McCain was straightforward and direct, but impatient. His other traits included a penchant for lucky charms, a fondness for hiking, and a sense of humor that sometimes backfired spectacularly, as when he made a joke in 1998 about the Clintons that was widely deemed not fit to print in newspapers: "Do you know why Chelsea Clinton is so ugly? – Because Janet Reno is her father." McCain subsequently apologized profusely, and the Clinton White House accepted his apology. McCain did not shy away from addressing his shortcomings, and he apologized for them. He was known for sometimes being prickly and hot-tempered with Senate colleagues, but his relations with his own Senate staff were more cordial, and inspired loyalty towards him. He formed a strong bond with two senators, Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham, over hawkish foreign policy and overseas travel, and they became dubbed the "Three Amigos".
In August 1999, McCain's memoir Faith of My Fathers, co-authored with Mark Salter, was published; a reviewer observed that its appearance "seems to have been timed to the unfolding Presidential campaign." The most successful of his writings, it received positive reviews, became a bestseller, and was later made into a TV film. The book traces McCain's family background and childhood, covers his time at Annapolis and his service before and during the Vietnam War, concluding with his release from captivity in 1973. According to one reviewer, it describes "the kind of challenges that most of us can barely imagine. It's a fascinating history of a remarkable military family."
McCain announced his candidacy for president on September 27, 1999, in Nashua, New Hampshire, saying he was staging "a fight to take our government back from the power brokers and special interests, and return it to the people and the noble cause of freedom it was created to serve". The frontrunner for the Republican nomination was Texas Governor George W. Bush, who had the political and financial support of most of the party establishment.
McCain focused on the New Hampshire primary, where his message appealed to independents. He traveled on a campaign bus called the Straight Talk Express. He held many town hall meetings, answering every question voters asked, in a successful example of "retail politics", and he used free media to compensate for his lack of funds. One reporter later recounted that, "McCain talked all day long with reporters on his Straight Talk Express bus; he talked so much that sometimes he said things that he shouldn't have, and that's why the media loved him." On February 1, 2000, he won New Hampshire's primary with 49 percent of the vote to Bush's 30 percent. The Bush campaign and the Republican establishment feared that a McCain victory in the crucial South Carolina primary might give his campaign unstoppable momentum.
McCain's campaign never completely recovered from his South Carolina defeat, although he did rebound partially by winning in Arizona and Michigan a few days later. He made a speech in Virginia Beach that criticized Christian leaders, including Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, as divisive conservatives, declaring "... we embrace the fine members of the religious conservative community. But that does not mean that we will pander to their self-appointed leaders." McCain lost the Virginia primary on February 29, and on March 7 lost nine of the thirteen primaries on Super Tuesday to Bush. With little hope of overcoming Bush's delegate lead, McCain withdrew from the race on March 9, 2000. He endorsed Bush two months later, and made occasional appearances with the Texas governor during the general election campaign.
McCain began 2001 by breaking with the new George W. Bush administration on a number of matters, including HMO reform, climate change, and gun control legislation; McCain–Feingold was opposed by Bush as well. In May 2001, McCain was one of only two Senate Republicans to vote against the Bush tax cuts. Besides the differences with Bush on ideological grounds, there was considerable antagonism between the two remaining from the previous year's campaign. Later, when a Republican senator, Jim Jeffords, became an Independent, thereby throwing control of the Senate to the Democrats, McCain defended Jeffords against "self-appointed enforcers of party loyalty". Indeed, there was speculation at the time, and in years since, about McCain himself leaving the Republican Party, but McCain had always adamantly denied that he ever considered doing so. Beginning in 2001, McCain used political capital gained from his presidential run, as well as improved legislative skills and relationships with other members, to become one of the Senate's most influential members.
In March 2002, McCain–Feingold, officially known as the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002, passed in both Houses of Congress and was signed into law by President Bush. Seven years in the making, it was McCain's greatest legislative achievement.
Meanwhile, in discussions over proposed U.S. action against Iraq, McCain was a strong supporter of the Bush administration's position. He stated that Iraq was "a clear and present danger to the United States of America", and voted accordingly for the Iraq War Resolution in October 2002. He predicted that U.S. forces would be treated as liberators by a large number of the Iraqi people. In May 2003, McCain voted against the second round of Bush tax cuts, saying it was unwise at a time of war. By November 2003, after a trip to Iraq, he was publicly questioning Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, saying that more U.S. troops were needed; the following year, McCain announced that he had lost confidence in Rumsfeld.
McCain appeared in several television shows and films while he was a sitting senator. He made uncredited cameo appearances in Wedding Crashers and 24 and had two uncredited cameos in Parks and Recreation. McCain also hosted Saturday Night Live in 2002 and appeared in two episodes in 2008.
In October 2003, McCain and Lieberman co-sponsored the Climate Stewardship Act that would have introduced a cap and trade system aimed at returning greenhouse gas emissions to 2000 levels; the bill was defeated with 55 votes to 43 in the Senate. They reintroduced modified versions of the Act two additional times, for the final time in January 2007 with the co-sponsorship of Barack Obama, among others.
In the 2004 U.S. presidential election campaign, McCain was once again frequently mentioned for the vice-presidential slot, only this time as part of the Democratic ticket under nominee John Kerry. McCain said that Kerry had never formally offered him the position and that he would not have accepted it if he had. At the 2004 Republican National Convention, McCain supported Bush for re-election, praising Bush's management of the War on Terror since the September 11 attacks. At the same time, he defended Kerry's Vietnam War record. By August 2004, McCain had the best favorable-to-unfavorable rating (55 percent to 19 percent) of any national politician; he campaigned for Bush much more than he had four years previously, though the two remained situational allies rather than friends.
McCain was also up for re-election as senator, in 2004. He defeated little-known Democratic schoolteacher Stuart Starky with his biggest margin of victory, garnering 77 percent of the vote.
In May 2005, McCain led the so-called Gang of 14 in the Senate, which established a compromise that preserved the ability of senators to filibuster judicial nominees, but only in "extraordinary circumstances". The compromise took the steam out of the filibuster movement, but some Republicans remained disappointed that the compromise did not eliminate filibusters of judicial nominees in all circumstances. McCain subsequently cast Supreme Court confirmation votes in favor of John Roberts and Samuel Alito, calling them "two of the finest justices ever appointed to the United States Supreme Court."
Owing to his time as a POW, McCain was recognized for his sensitivity to the detention and interrogation of detainees in the War on Terror. An opponent of the Bush administration's use of torture and detention without trial at Guantánamo Bay, saying: "some of these guys are terrible, terrible killers and the worst kind of scum of humanity. But, one, they deserve to have some adjudication of their cases ... even Adolf Eichmann got a trial". In October 2005, McCain introduced the McCain Detainee Amendment to the Defense Appropriations bill for 2005, and the Senate voted 90–9 to support the amendment. It prohibits inhumane treatment of prisoners, including prisoners at Guantánamo, by confining military interrogations to the techniques in the U.S. Army Field Manual on Interrogation. Although Bush had threatened to veto the bill if McCain's amendment was included, the President announced in December 2005 that he accepted McCain's terms and would "make it clear to the world that this government does not torture and that we adhere to the international convention of torture, whether it be here at home or abroad". This stance, among others, led to McCain being named by Time magazine in 2006 as one of America's 10 Best Senators. McCain voted in February 2008 against a bill containing a ban on waterboarding, which provision was later narrowly passed and vetoed by Bush. However, the bill in question contained other provisions to which McCain objected, and his spokesman stated: "This wasn't a vote on waterboarding. This was a vote on applying the standards of the [Army] field manual to CIA personnel."
Meanwhile, McCain continued questioning the progress of the war in Iraq. In September 2005, he remarked upon Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers' optimistic outlook on the war's progress: "Things have not gone as well as we had planned or expected, nor as we were told by you, General Myers." In August 2006, he criticized the administration for continually understating the effectiveness of the insurgency: "We [have] not told the American people how tough and difficult this could be." From the beginning, McCain strongly supported the Iraq troop surge of 2007. The strategy's opponents labeled it "McCain's plan" and University of Virginia political science professor Larry Sabato said, "McCain owns Iraq just as much as Bush does now." The surge and the war were unpopular during most of the year, even within the Republican Party, as McCain's presidential campaign was underway; faced with the consequences, McCain frequently responded, "I would much rather lose a campaign than a war." In March 2008, McCain credited the surge strategy with reducing violence in Iraq, as he made his eighth trip to that country since the war began.
McCain addressed concerns about his age and past health issues, stating in 2005 that his health was "excellent". He had been treated for melanoma and an operation in 2000 for that condition left a noticeable mark on the left side of his face. McCain's prognosis appeared favorable, according to independent experts, especially because he had already survived without a recurrence for more than seven years. In May 2008, McCain's campaign briefly let the press review his medical records, and he was described as appearing cancer-free, having a strong heart, and in general being in good health.
When Obama became the Democrats' presumptive nominee in early June, McCain proposed joint town hall meetings, but Obama instead requested more traditional debates for the fall. In July, a staff shake-up put Steve Schmidt in full operational control of the McCain campaign. Rick Davis remained as campaign manager but with a reduced role. Davis had also managed McCain's 2000 presidential campaign; in 2005 and 2006, U.S. intelligence warned McCain's Senate staff about Davis's Russian links but gave no further warnings.
McCain received several honorary degrees from colleges and universities in the United States and internationally. These include ones from Colgate University (LL.D 2000), The Citadel (DPA 2002), Wake Forest University (LL.D May 20, 2002), the University of Southern California (DHL May 2004), Northwestern University (LL.D June 17, 2005), Liberty University (2006), The New School (2006), and the Royal Military College of Canada (D.MSc June 27, 2013). He was also made an Honorary Patron of the University Philosophical Society at Trinity College Dublin in 2005.
Breaking from his 2001 and 2003 votes, McCain supported the Bush tax cut extension in May 2006, saying not to do so would amount to a tax increase. Working with Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy, McCain was a strong proponent of comprehensive immigration reform, which would involve legalization, guest worker programs, and border enforcement components. The Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act was never voted on in 2005, while the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006 passed the Senate in May 2006 but failed in the House. In June 2007, President Bush, McCain, and others made the strongest push yet for such a bill, the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007, but it aroused intense grassroots opposition among talk radio listeners and others, some of whom furiously characterized the proposal as an "amnesty" program, and the bill twice failed to gain cloture in the Senate.
McCain formally announced his intention to run for President of the United States on April 25, 2007, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. He stated that: "I'm not running for president to be somebody, but to do something; to do the hard but necessary things, not the easy and needless things."
McCain clinched enough delegates for the nomination and his focus shifted toward the general election, while Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton fought a prolonged battle for the Democratic nomination. McCain introduced various policy proposals, and sought to improve his fundraising. Cindy McCain, who accounted for most of the couple's wealth with an estimated net worth of $100 million, made part of her tax returns public in May. After facing criticism about lobbyists on staff, the McCain campaign issued new rules in May 2008 to avoid conflicts of interest, causing five top aides to leave.
On August 29, 2008, McCain revealed Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his surprise choice for a running mate. McCain was only the second U.S. major-party presidential nominee (after Walter Mondale, who chose Geraldine Ferraro) to select a woman as his running mate and the first Republican to do so. On September 3, 2008, McCain and Palin became the Republican Party's presidential and vice presidential nominees at the 2008 Republican National Convention in Saint Paul, Minnesota. McCain surged ahead of Obama in national polls following the convention, as the Palin pick energized core Republican voters who had previously been wary of him. However, by the campaign's own later admission, the rollout of Palin to the national media went poorly, and voter reactions to Palin grew increasingly negative, especially among independents and other voters concerned about her qualifications.
Following his defeat, McCain returned to the Senate amid varying views about what role he might play there. In mid-November 2008 he met with President-elect Obama, and the two discussed issues they had commonality on. Around the same time, McCain indicated that he intended to run for re-election to his Senate seat in 2010. As the inauguration neared, Obama consulted with McCain on a variety of matters, to an extent rarely seen between a president-elect and his defeated rival, and President Obama's inauguration speech contained an allusion to McCain's theme of finding a purpose greater than oneself.
The non-partisan National Journal rates a Senator's votes by what percentage of the Senate voted more liberally than him or her, and what percentage more conservatively, in three policy areas: economic, social, and foreign. For 2005–2006 (as reported in the 2008 Almanac of American Politics), McCain's average ratings were as follows: economic policy: 59 percent conservative and 41 percent liberal; social policy: 54 percent conservative and 38 percent liberal; and foreign policy: 56 percent conservative and 43 percent liberal. In 2012, the National Journal gave McCain a composite score of 73 percent conservative and 27 percent liberal, while in 2013 he received a composite score of 60 percent conservative and 40 percent liberal.
McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone. Had he been elected, he would have become the first president who was born outside the contiguous forty-eight states. This raised a potential legal issue, since the United States Constitution requires the president to be a natural-born citizen of the United States. A bipartisan legal review, and a unanimous but non-binding Senate resolution, both concluded that he was a natural-born citizen. If inaugurated in 2009 at the age of 72 years and 144 days, he would have been the oldest person to become president.
All McCain's family members were on good terms with him, and he defended them against some of the negative consequences of his high-profile political lifestyle. His family's military tradition extends to the latest generation: son John Sidney IV ("Jack") graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2009, becoming the fourth generation John S. McCain to do so, and is a helicopter pilot; son James served two tours with the Marines in the Iraq War; and son Doug flew jets in the navy. His daughter Meghan became a blogging and Twittering presence in the debate about the future of the Republican Party following the 2008 elections, and showed some of his maverick tendencies. In 2017 Meghan joined the cast of the popular ABC talk show The View as a co-host. Senator McCain himself also appeared as a guest on the program.
McCain also harshly criticized Obama for scrapping construction of the U.S. missile defense complex in Poland, declined to enter negotiations over climate change legislation similar to what he had proposed in the past, and strongly opposed the Obama health care plan. McCain led a successful filibuster of a measure that would allow repeal of the military's "Don't ask, don't tell" policy towards gays. Factors involved in McCain's new direction included Senate staffers leaving, a renewed concern over national debt levels and the scope of federal government, a possible Republican primary challenge from conservatives in 2010, and McCain's campaign edge being slow to wear off. As one longtime McCain advisor said, "A lot of people, including me, thought he might be the Republican building bridges to the Obama Administration. But he's been more like the guy blowing up the bridges."
In early 2010, a primary challenge from radio talk show host and former U.S. Congressman J. D. Hayworth materialized in the 2010 U.S. Senate election in Arizona and drew support from some but not all elements of the Tea Party movement. With Hayworth using the campaign slogan "The Consistent Conservative", McCain said—despite his own past use of the term on a number of occasions—"I never considered myself a maverick. I consider myself a person who serves the people of Arizona to the best of his abilities." The primary challenge coincided with McCain reversing or muting his stance on some issues such as the bank bailouts, closing of the Guantánamo Bay detention camp, campaign finance restrictions, and gays in the military.
When the health care plan, now called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, passed Congress and became law in March 2010, McCain strongly opposed the landmark legislation not only on its merits but also on the way it had been handled in Congress. As a consequence, he warned that congressional Republicans would not work with Democrats on anything else: "There will be no cooperation for the rest of the year. They have poisoned the well in what they've done and how they've done it." McCain became a vocal defender of Arizona SB 1070, the April 2010 tough anti-illegal immigration state law that aroused national controversy, saying that the state had been forced to take action given the federal government's inability to control the border. In the August 24 primary, McCain beat Hayworth by a 56 to 32 percent margin. McCain proceeded to easily defeat Democratic Tucson city councilman Rodney Glassman in the general election.
Regarding the Syrian civil war that had begun in 2011, McCain repeatedly argued for the U.S. intervening militarily in the conflict on the side of the anti-government forces. He staged a visit to rebel forces inside Syria in May 2013, the first senator to do so, and called for arming the Free Syrian Army with heavy weapons and for the establishment of a no-fly zone over the country. Following reports that two of the people he posed for pictures with had been responsible for the kidnapping of eleven Lebanese Shiite pilgrims the year before, McCain disputed one of the identifications and said he had not met directly with the other. Following the 2013 Ghouta chemical weapons attack, McCain argued again for strong American military action against the government of the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, and in September 2013 cast a Foreign Relations committee vote in favor of Obama's request to Congress that it authorize a military response. McCain took the lead in criticizing a growing non-interventionist movement within the Republican Party, exemplified by his March 2013 comment that Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz and Representative Justin Amash were "wacko birds".
In the 2012 Republican Party presidential primaries, McCain endorsed former 2008 rival Mitt Romney and campaigned for him, but compared the contest to a Greek tragedy due to its drawn-out nature with massive super PAC-funded attack ads damaging all the contenders. He labeled the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision as "uninformed, arrogant, naïve", and, decrying its effects and the future scandals he thought it would bring, said it would become considered the court's "worst decision ... in the 21st century". McCain took the lead in opposing the defense spending sequestrations brought on by the Budget Control Act of 2011 and gained attention for defending State Department aide Huma Abedin against charges brought by a few House Republicans that she had ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.
During 2013, McCain was a member of a bi-partisan group of senators, the "Gang of Eight", which announced principles for another try at comprehensive immigration reform. The resulting Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 passed the Senate by a 68–32 margin, but faced an uncertain future in the House. In July 2013, McCain was at the forefront of an agreement among senators to drop filibusters against Obama administration executive nominees without Democrats resorting to the "nuclear option" that would disallow such filibusters altogether. However, the option would be imposed later in the year anyway, to the senator's displeasure. These developments and some other negotiations showed that McCain now had improved relations with the Obama administration, including the president himself, as well as with Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and that he had become the leader of a power center in the Senate for cutting deals in an otherwise bitterly partisan environment. They also led some observers to conclude that the "maverick" McCain had returned.
McCain was publicly skeptical about the Republican strategy that precipitated the U.S. federal government shutdown of 2013 and U.S. debt-ceiling crisis of 2013 in order to defund or delay the Affordable Care Act; in October 2013 he voted in favor of the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2014, which resolved them and said, "Republicans have to understand we have lost this battle, as I predicted weeks ago, that we would not be able to win because we were demanding something that was not achievable." Similarly, he was one of nine Republican senators who voted for the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 at the end of the year. By early 2014, McCain's apostasies were enough that the Arizona Republican Party formally censured him for having what they saw as a liberal record that had been "disastrous and harmful". McCain remained stridently opposed to many aspects of Obama's foreign policy, however, and in June 2014, following major gains by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant in the 2014 Northern Iraq offensive, decried what he saw as a U.S. failure to protect its past gains in Iraq and called on the president's entire national security team to resign. McCain said, "Could all this have been avoided? ... The answer is absolutely yes. If I sound angry it's because I am angry."
McCain was a supporter of the Euromaidan protests against Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his government, and appeared in Independence Square in Kyiv in December 2013. Following the overthrow of Yanukovych and subsequent 2014 Russian military intervention in Ukraine, McCain became a vocal supporter of providing arms to Ukrainian military forces, saying the sanctions imposed against Russia were not enough. In 2014, McCain led the opposition to the appointments of Colleen Bell, Noah Mamet, and George Tsunis to the ambassadorships in Hungary, Argentina, and Norway, respectively, arguing they were unqualified appointees being rewarded for their political fundraising. Unlike many Republicans, McCain supported the release and contents of the Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture in December 2014, saying "The truth is sometimes a hard pill to swallow. It sometimes causes us difficulties at home and abroad. It is sometimes used by our enemies in attempts to hurt us. But the American people are entitled to it, nonetheless." He added that the CIA's practices following the September 11 attacks had "stained our national honor" while doing "much harm and little practical good" and that "Our enemies act without conscience. We must not." He opposed the Obama administration's December 2014 decision to normalize relations with Cuba.
Columnists such as Robert Robb and Matthew Continetti used a formulation devised by William F. Buckley Jr. to describe McCain as "conservative" but not "a conservative", meaning that while McCain usually tended towards conservative positions, he was not "anchored by the philosophical tenets of modern American conservatism". Following his 2008 presidential election loss, McCain began adopting more orthodox conservative views; the magazine National Journal rated McCain along with seven of his colleagues as the "most conservative" Senators for 2010 and he achieved his first 100 percent rating from the American Conservative Union for that year. During Barack Obama's presidency, McCain was one of the top five Republicans most likely to vote with Obama's position on significant votes; McCain voted with Obama's position on such votes more than half the time in 2013 and was "censured by the Arizona Republican party for a so-called 'liberal' voting record".
In March 2019—seven months after McCain's death—Trump issued a series of public statements that criticized McCain at least four times in five days. Trump also claimed that he approved McCain's funeral but was not thanked for it. However, the Washington National Cathedral responded that no governmental or presidential approval was needed for McCain's funeral because he was not a former president. McCain's lying in state was approved by the Senate, while Trump did approve the transport for McCain's body. Trump also described himself as having "got the job done" on the Veterans Choice Act while claiming McCain failed on the same issue. However, McCain was actually one of the two main authors of the bill, which President Barack Obama signed into law in 2014. Trump had signed the VA MISSION Act of 2018 (S. 2372), an expansion of that law worked on by McCain that includes McCain's name in its full title. Trump also claimed that McCain graduated "last in his class", though McCain was actually fifth from last.
The 114th United States Congress assembled in January 2015 with Republicans in control of the Senate, and McCain achieved one of his longtime goals when he became chairman of the Armed Services Committee. In this position, he led the writing of proposed Senate legislation that sought to modify parts of the Goldwater-Nichols Act of 1986 in order to return responsibility for major weapons systems acquisition back to the individual armed services and their secretaries and away from the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. As chair, McCain tried to maintain a bipartisan approach and forged a good relationship with ranking member Jack Reed. In April 2015, McCain announced that he would run for a sixth term in Arizona's 2016 Senate election. While there was still conservative and Tea Party anger at him, it was unclear if they would mount an effective primary challenge against him. During 2015, McCain strongly opposed the Obama administration's proposed comprehensive agreement on the Iranian nuclear program (later finalized as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)), saying that Secretary of State Kerry was "delusional" and "giv[ing] away the store" in negotiations with Iran. McCain supported the Saudi Arabian-led military intervention in Yemen against the Shia Houthis and forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, saying: "I'm sure civilians die in war. Not nearly as many as the Houthis have executed."
During the 2016 Republican primaries, McCain said he would support the Republican nominee even if it was Donald Trump, but following Mitt Romney's 2016 anti-Trump speech, McCain endorsed the sentiments expressed in that speech, saying he had serious concerns about Trump's "uninformed and indeed dangerous statements on national security issues". Relations between the two had been fraught since early in Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, when McCain referred to a room full of Trump supporters as "crazies", and the real estate mogul then said of McCain: "He insulted me, and he insulted everyone in that room ... He is a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren't captured ... perhaps he was a war hero, but right now he's said a lot of very bad things about a lot of people." McCain also vocally opposed a federal loan guarantee for a development project Trump was contemplating on the West Side of Manhattan in 1996. Following Trump becoming the presumptive nominee of the party on May 3, McCain said that Republican voters had spoken and he would support Trump.
In November 2016, McCain learned of the existence of a dossier regarding the Trump presidential campaign's links to Russia compiled by Christopher Steele. McCain sent a representative to gather more information, who obtained a copy of the dossier. In December 2016, McCain passed on the dossier to FBI Director James Comey in a 1-on-1 meeting. McCain later wrote that he felt the dossier's "allegations were disturbing" but unverifiable by himself, so he let the FBI investigate.
On December 31, 2016, in Tbilisi, Georgia, McCain stated that the United States should strengthen its sanctions against Russia. One year later, on December 23, 2017, the State Department announced that the United States would provide Ukraine with "enhanced defensive capabilities".
In June 2017, McCain voted to support President Trump's controversial arms deal with Saudi Arabia.
Repeal and replacement of Obamacare (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) was a centerpiece of McCain's 2016 re-election campaign, and in July 2017 he said, "Have no doubt: Congress must replace Obamacare, which has hit Arizonans with some of the highest premium increases in the nation and left 14 of Arizona's 15 counties with only one provider option on the exchanges this year." He added that he supports affordable and quality health care, but objected that the pending Senate bill did not do enough to shield the Medicaid system in Arizona.
In September 2017, as the Rohingya crisis in Myanmar became ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya Muslim minority, McCain announced moves to scrap planned future military cooperation with Myanmar.
In October 2017, McCain praised President Trump's decision to decertify Iran's compliance with the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA) while not yet withdrawing the U.S. from the agreement, saying that the Obama-era policy failed "to meet the multifaceted threat Iran poses. The goals President Trump presented in his speech today are a welcomed long overdue change."
On July 14, 2017, McCain underwent a minimally invasive craniotomy at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona, in order to remove a blood clot above his left eye. His absence prompted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to delay a vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act. Five days later, Mayo Clinic doctors announced that the laboratory results from the surgery confirmed the presence of a glioblastoma, which is a very aggressive cancerous brain tumor. Standard treatment options for this tumor include chemotherapy and radiation, although even with treatment, average survival time is approximately 14 months. McCain was a survivor of previous cancers, including melanoma.
On November 29, 2017, the Phoenix City Council unanimously voted to name Terminal 3 at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in Honor of the Senator which opened on January 7, 2019 after his death in August 2018.
McCain did not vote in the Senate after December 2017, remaining instead in Arizona to undergo cancer treatment. On April 15, 2018, he underwent surgery for an infection relating to diverticulitis and the following day was reported to be in stable condition.
On August 24, 2018, five days before his 82nd birthday, McCain's family announced that he would no longer receive treatment for his cancer. He died the following day at 4:28 p.m. MST (23:28 UTC), with his wife and family beside him, at his home in Cornville, Arizona.
On July 11, 2018, USS John S. McCain, originally named in honor of the Senator's father and grandfather, was rededicated in the Senator's name also.
On April 4, 2019, the Kyiv City Council renamed a street that had previously been named after the NKVD agent Ivan Kudria to "John McCain Street".
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey was empowered to appoint McCain's interim replacement until a special election is held in 2020 to determine who is to serve out the remainder of McCain's term, which ends in January 2023 and thus appointed the then former Arizona U.S. Senator Jon Kyl to fill the vacancy. Under Arizona law, the appointed replacement must be of the same party as McCain, a Republican. Newspaper speculation about potential appointees has included McCain's widow Cindy, former Senator Jon Kyl, and former Representatives Matt Salmon and John Shadegg. Ducey said that he would not make a formal appointment until after McCain's final funeral and burial; on September 4, two days after McCain was buried, Ducey appointed Kyl to fill McCain's seat.
John had three daughters named Meghan, Bridget, and Sidney and three sons named Douglas, James and John. John was married to Carol McCain from 1965 to 1980, then he married Cindy McCain later in 1980. John's father, John S. McCain, Jr., was a U.S. Navy admiral.
|#4||Bridget McCain||Daughter||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||29||Celebrity Family Member|
|#5||Meghan McCain||Daughter||$4 Million||N/A||36||Journalist|
|#6||John S. McCain Jr.||Father||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#7||Carol McCain||Former spouse||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#8||John S. McCain Sr.||Grandfather||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#11||John Sidney McCain IV||Son||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#13||Cindy McCain||Spouse||$300 Million||N/A||66||Republicans|
Currently, John McCain is 85 years, 1 months and 20 days old. John McCain will celebrate 86th birthday on a Monday 29th of August 2022. Below we countdown to John McCain upcoming birthday.