John McCain…A War Hero and a Statesman

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In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Horatio and Hamlet are reminiscing regarding Hamlet’s, recently, deceased father:

Hamlet – My father – methinks I see my father.

Horatio – Where my lord?

Hamlet – in my mind’s eye, Horatio.

Horatio – I saw him once.  He was a goodly king.

Hamlet – He was a man.  Take him for all in all.

Hamlet – I shall not look upon his like again.

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‘McCain graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1958 and followed his father and grandfather-both four star admirals-into the U.S. Navy.  He became a naval aviator and flew ground-attack aircraft from aircraft carriers.  During the Vietnam War, he was almost killed in the 1967 USS Forrestal fire.  While McCain was on a bombing mission during Operation Rolling Thunder over Hanoi in October 1967, he was shot down, seriously injured, and captured by the North Vietnamese.  He was a prisoner of war until 1973.  McCain experienced episodes of torture and refused an out-of-sequence early repatriation offer.  The wounds that he sustained during the war left him with lifelong physical disabilities.  He retired from the Navy as a captain in 1981 and moved to Arizona, where he entered politics.  In 1982, McCain was elected to the United States House of Representatives, where he served two terms.  He entered the U.S. Senate in 1987 and easily won reelection five times, the last time in 2016.’    Wikipedia

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I came to a full appreciation of Senator McCain somewhat late in his career.  Although, I was hoping that he would be the Republican candidate in 2000 and I admired his candor and the ‘Straight Talk Express.’

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What captivated my attention, was the Senator’s ability to work across the aisle of the Senate.

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His working with Senator Russ Feingold, a Democrat, to produce the landmark legislation, regulating the financing of political campaigns, commonly know as the McCain-Feingold Act.

When John McCain was running as the Republican candidate for President in 2008, he illustrated what it was to be a statesman and and a gentleman.

At a McCain campaign event, on October 10th,  in Minnesota, the Senator took a question from a woman in the audience who said, ‘she had heard that Obama was an Arab.’

McCain responded, ‘I have to tell you.  Senator Obama is a decent person and a person you don’t have to be scared of as president of the United States.’

‘McCain passed his wireless wireless microphone to one woman who said, ‘I can’t trust Obama.  I have read about him and he’s not, he’s not uh—he’s an Arab.  He’s not—‘ before McCain retook the microphone and replied;’

‘No ma’am.  He’s a decent family man [and] he’s a citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues and that’s what this campaign’s all about.  He’s not [an Arab].’    Politico

Senator McCain was great friends with Ted Kennedy and Joe Liberman.

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He wanted to place, Independent, Senator Joe Liberman on the Republican campaign ticket as his vice president.  His political advisors assured him that they would never be able to sell the choice of Liberman to the Republican National Convention.  I am not, at all certain, that they were right and he might have won if he had.

McCain’s final speech on the floor of the Senate called for a return to regular order and his warning that the Senate was getting nothing done!

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Shortly after McCain’s final Senate speech he voted no on what was called the, ‘skinny repeal,’ of Obama Care.  Now, I don’t think that McCain was fan of Obama care…but he was, vehemently, against either political party ramming through legislation, from the top down, without the appropriate hearings and public testimony and collaboration by both parties.

Senator McCain’s final speech was at the National Constitution Center, ‘To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain ‘the last best hope of earth’ for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems, is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.’

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Former presidents, Barrack Obama and George W. Bush, will eulogize the departed war hero and statesman at his funeral….at his request.

 

Note: All Photos are from Google.

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