Sen. John McCain

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McCain rips Trump for his call congratulating Vladimir Putin on election win

McCain didn't hold back.


Andrew Wyrich


Posted on Mar 20, 2018   Updated on May 21, 2021, 9:10 pm CDT

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) criticized President Donald Trump on Tuesday for calling Russian President Vladimir Putin and congratulating him on his election victory.

Putin won his election over the weekend by a wide margin, but there have been reports of fraud, including several videos posted on social media alleging ballot stuffing in the country.

Trump said the two leaders had a “very good call,” he congratulated Putin on his victory, and they agreed to “get together in the not too distant future,” according to White House pool reports.

McCain was not pleased with the president congratulating Putin amid the allegations of voting fraud.

“An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections,” McCain said in a statement. “And by doing so with Vladimir Putin, President Trump insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election to determine their country’s future, including the countless Russian patriots who have risked so much to protest and resist Putin’s regime.”

Trump and McCain have had a rocky relationship since the Republican primaries several years ago, where the now-president mocked the Arizona senator’s time as a prisoner of war.

More recently, McCain has written a blistering op-ed in the Washington Post where he criticized Trump’s treatment of Congress, and another one where he blasted Trump’s ongoing feud with the press.

McCain, who has been diagnosed with a brain tumor, also was a deciding vote that killed a GOP-led effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

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*First Published: Mar 20, 2018, 7:00 pm CDT