Meghan McCain directs eulogy message at Trump
Meghan McCain eulogized her father’s death as “the passing of American greatness,” directing her message squarely at President Donald Trump and encouraging others to live up to her father’s example.
Her tearful, impassioned tribute opened the memorial service for John McCain at Washington National Cathedral. It set a tone echoing her father’s own passion.
She said they “gather here to mourn the passing of American greatness — the real thing, not cheap rhetoric from men who will never come near the sacrifice he gave so willingly, nor the opportunistic appropriation of those who lived lives of comfort and privilege while he suffered and served.”
She said to applause, “The America of John McCain has no need to be made great again because America was always great.”
Trump is not on hand for the ceremony, after McCain’s family made clear he was not invited.
Three former presidents, scores of members of Congress, current and former world leaders and family and friends have gathered Saturday morning to eulogize McCain as an American hero. His flag-draped casket was escorted by military body bearers up the cathedral steps under gray skies.
Among those in the front row at the cathedral are Barack and Michelle Obama, George and Laura Bush, Bill and Hillary Clinton, as well as Dick Cheney and Al Gore. McCain’s motorcade arrived from the Capitol, where he laid in state overnight, and the procession made a stop at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, where McCain’s wife, Cindy, placed a wreath.
At McCain’s request, Obama, a Democrat, and Bush, a Republican, are among those speaking about the six-term senator during Saturday’s service.
It is the last public event in Washington, where McCain lived and worked over four decades, and part of McCain’s five-day, cross-country funeral procession. He died Aug. 25 at age 81.
“His death seems to have reminded the American people that these values are what makes us a great nation, not the tribal partisanship and personal attack politics that have recently characterized our life, ” said former Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, a longtime friend and fellow global traveler who McCain once considered as his vice presidential running mate.
“This week’s celebration of the life and values and patriotism of this hero, I think have taken our country above all that,” he said. “In a way, it’s the last great gift that John McCain gave America.”
Full story to come.