Reps. Emanuel Cleaver and Walter Jones have introduced a resolution that calls for the White House to issue a public apology to Sen. John McCain regarding comments made by White House communication aide Kelly Sadler.
The administration has been under fire since a joke Sadler made about McCain during a May 10 meeting leaked to the media. During the staffers’ meeting, Sadler, responding to McCain’s opposition to Gina Haspel, President Trump’s nominee to lead the CIA, reportedly mocked the Arizona senator’s battle against brain cancer, saying McCain is “dying anyway.”
Cleaver and Jones said McCain deserves dignity and respect, noting his service in the U.S. Navy.
“The president, perhaps more so than any elected official in this great country, should practice the politics of decency,” Cleaver, Missouri Democrat said in a statement.
Jones concurred, calling Sadler’s comments’ “outrageous and unacceptable.”
“It’s a sad day in this country when White House officials are mocking a man who, while serving his country, was tortured as a prisoner of war,” the North Carolina Republican said. “He’s more than earned the right to speak out on these matters. A public apology should be issued immediately.”
A draft of the resolution states:
“Whereas, on May 10, 2018 in response to Senator John McCain’s call for fellow senators to oppose the nomination of Gina Haspel to lead the Central Intelligence Agency because she oversaw the agency’s use of torture, White House Communications Aide Kelly Sadler was widely reported to have stated, ‘It doesn’t matter, he’s dying anyway.'”
In a recent appearance on MCNBC Live, Cleaver added that, “the mean-spiritedness coming out of the White house is giving rise to what we are seeing because I think many people are thinking, well if the president can make these comments, then right wing protestors, hate groups, and the president refusing to apologize…there’s not a parent in America who would teach their children not to apologize after they have done something wrong.”