Donald Trump u-turns on John McCain, lowers White House flags

Mark Wilson  Getty Images FILE

Mark Wilson Getty Images FILE

McCain's death could give Trump even greater leverage over a rightward-tilting Republican party as he fights for his political life against the Russian Federation meddling and obstruction investigations. However, Trump reportedly decided that extending sympathies to the bereft McCain family on Twitter would suffice. Trump ignored reporters' repeated questions about McCain at White House gatherings on Monday, but late Monday afternoon the flags were lowered again to half-staff. Flags are typically lowered to half-staff until a member of Congress's burial.

The death of senator John McCain has left his Republican party ever more firmly in the hands of Donald Trump, without a voice willing to challenge the president's most extreme statements and policies.

Fighting back tears, the South Carolina Republican spoke about his personal experiences with McCain touring the Hanoi Hilton where he was held by the North Vietnamese and campaigning unsuccessfully for president in 2008.

McConnell led a series of solemn tributes to the deceased senator on the floor of the Senate and used his remarks to suggest adding McCain's portrait to the Senate Reception Room, a rare honor, or renaming a hearing room after him. "Our hearts and prayers are going to the family of Senator John McCain. and we very much appreciate everything Senator McCain has done for our country". Following McCain's death, some criticized the president for a lack of respect for the senator whom Trump had criticized numerous times.

McCain will be buried on Sunday in a private ceremony at the US Naval Academy chapel.

Gonzalez will be one of the 6 men selected to carry McCain's casket at his funeral on Thursday - and tells TMZ Sports the late Arizona senator had been planning out the event for months. Trump appeared to defend the rallygoers when he said there were "fine people on both sides".

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Graham also said that White House chief of staff John Kelly had reached out to the McCain family and had spoken to Cindy McCain, offering the administration's assistance in whatever she needs. The Senate building was named in his honor in 1972. In one of his favorite refrains shared with "every good sailor", now being bestowed on McCain himself, he wished his friend "fair winds and following seas".

Trump wants to build a border wall between the United States and Mexico. He later withdrew his support after the release of the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape in which Trump bragged about groping women.

Davis choked up a several points as he read McCain's words.

In response to another question, Davis told reporters that the family's thoughts were exclusively on McCain.

"Do not despair of our present difficulties", he wrote. We believe always in the promise and greatness of America because nothing is inevitable here.

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