Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) on Sunday called on President Donald Trump to apologize for trashing the late John McCain on Twitter during the weekend, and backed the departed Arizona Republican for delivering to the FBI the so-called dossier on Trump’s alleged ties to Russia.
“I’ve long thought that his personal and direct attacks on Sen. McCain” were “one of the most detestable things about President Trump’s conduct as a candidate,” Coons told host George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week” in defense of the former GOP senator and 2008 presidential candidate, who died last August after a battle with brain cancer.
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“I frankly think the president’s continued attacks on now-late Sen. John McCain is something that’s regrettable and for which he should apologize,” Coons added.
Trump railed against McCain on Saturday for passing along to former FBI Director James Comey an explosive and largely unverified dossier compiled by ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. The salacious report detailed years of links between Trump and Russia, and insinuated that the Kremlin possessed compromising information on the president.
“Spreading the fake and totally discredited Dossier ‘is unfortunately a very dark stain against John McCain,'” Trump wrote online, appearing to quote former Clinton independent counsel Kenneth Starr.
Trump attacked again on Sunday morning, tweeting: “So it was indeed (just proven in court papers) ‘last in his class’ (Annapolis) John McCain that sent the Fake Dossier to the FBI and Media hoping to have it printed BEFORE the Election. He & the Dems, working together, failed (as usual). Even the Fake News refused this garbage!”
McCain flagged the dossier to law enforcement officials in December 2016 — several weeks after the presidential election. The FBI had launched its probe into Russian election interference five months earlier.
“Sen. McCain conveyed that report out of a sense of duty, and he is someone who lived his entire life with a sense of honor and duty to our country,” Coons said Sunday.
Meghan McCain, the late senator’s daughter, re-posted the president’s tweet on Saturday, writing to Trump: “No one will ever love you the way they loved my father.”
She added: “I wish I had been given more Saturday’s with him. Maybe spend yours with your family instead of on twitter obsessing over mine?