John McCain goes off on Trump in his new book

  • Republican Sen. John McCain rips into President Donald Trump in his new book, “The Restless Wave,” accusing him of not caring about Russian election interference while questioning his character and decisions.
  • “I’m not sure what to make of President Trump’s convictions,” McCain wrote. “The appearance of toughness or a reality show facsimile of toughness seems to matter more than any of our values.”
  • McCain seemingly believes America’s values and position as a global leader are rapidly eroding under Trump.

Republican Senator John McCain rips into President Donald Trump in his new book, “The Restless Wave,” accusing him of not caring about Russian election interference while questioning his general convictions.

“Trump seems to vary from refusing to believe what [Russian President Vladimir] Putin is doing to just not caring about it,” McCain wrote.

Taking aim at one of Trump’s primary slogans, McCain added that there’s nothing “America First” about “taking the word of a KGB colonel over that of the American intelligence community.”

Trump has routinely expressed doubts regarding Russia’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election despite a consensus among intelligence agencies. Some of the president’s statements on this issue have even contradicted the positions of his top advisers.

In addition to attacking Trump on the issue of Russian election interference, McCain went after the president’s core beliefs.

“I’m not sure what to make of President Trump’s convictions,” McCain wrote. “The appearance of toughness or a reality show facsimile of toughness seems to matter more than any of our values.”

In the Arizona senator’s view, Trump seems to “mock the idea that America has any business at all promoting its values abroad.”

McCain wrote that Trump’s “lack of empathy” for refugees is particularly “disturbing.”

“The way he speaks about them is appalling, as if welfare or terrorism were the only purposes they could have in coming to our country,” the six-term senator added.

McCain said Trump essentially mimics “autocrats” in his attacks on the free press and he further accused the president of showering “some of the world’s worst tyrants” with praise, including Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump’s apparent disregard for human rights is especially unsettling to McCain.

“The world expects us to be concerned with the condition of humanity. We should be proud of that reputation. I’m not sure the president understands that,” he wrote.

In short, McCain seemingly believes America’s values and position as a global leader are rapidly eroding under Trump.

“It is hard to know what to expect from President Trump, what’s a pose, what’s genuine,” he wrote, adding that Trump’s true character will likely come through in his foreign policy decisions, which will hopefully include “his growing recognition that ‘leader of the free world’ is more than an honorific. It is a moral obligation more important than the person who possesses it.”

McCain also criticised the president’s staffing decisions, citing former White House aides Sebastian Gorka and Steve Bannon as examples.

“Bigger misfits haven’t been seen inside a White House since William Taft got stuck in his bathtub,” he wrote.

The Restless Wave: Good Times, Just Causes, Great Fights, and Other Appreciations,” McCain’s seventh book co-written with Mark Salter, is out Tuesday.

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