Evan Vucci / APPresident Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport on Sept. 3, 2020, in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. (Evan Vucci / AP)
President Donald Trump said a report claiming he referred to fallen soldiers and the late Sen. John McCain as “losers” was nothing more than “a disgraceful attempt to influence the 2020 Election.”
“I was never a big fan of John McCain, disagreed with him on many things including ridiculous endless wars and the lack of success he had in dealing with the VA and our great Vets, but the lowering of our Nations American Flags, and the first class funeral he was given by our Country, had to be approved by me, as President, & I did so without hesitation or complaint,” Trump tweeted Thursday.
“Quite the contrary, I felt it was well deserved. I even sent Air Force One to bring his body, in casket, from Arizona to Washington. It was my honor to do so.”
He added that he never called McCain a “loser” and would “swear on whatever, or whoever, I was asked to swear on” that he never called “our great fallen soldiers anything other than HEROES.
“This is more made up Fake News given by disgusting & jealous failures in a disgraceful attempt to influence the 2020 Election!”
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Trump was responding to a report from The Atlantic that quoted people who spoke “on condition of anonymity.”
Trump allegedly canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018 because he didn’t want to mess up his hair and didn’t believe it was important to honor the Americans who died at Belleau Wood during World War I, the outlet claimed, citing “four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day.”
“Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers,” Trump was quoted as saying. The report said he later called the Marines “suckers” for getting killed.
During his campaign run, did say McCain was “not a war hero.”
Trump’s full quote from the 2015 interview was: “He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”
The Atlantic report also claimed Trump was “furious” when flags were lowered in honor of McCain’s 2018 death and said McCain was a “f—ing loser.”
White House spokeswoman Alyssa Farah said the report was “false.”
“President Trump holds the military in the highest regard,” Farah said in an emailed statement to The Atlantic.
“He’s demonstrated his commitment to them at every turn: delivering on his promise to give our troops a much needed pay raise, increasing military spending, signing critical veterans reforms, and supporting military spouses. This has no basis in fact.”
A host of current and former Trump administration officials have strongly pushed back on the accuracy of The Atlantic report.
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