Kelly Sadler, a member of Trump’s communications team, sparked heated debate after saying that McCain’s opposition to Gina Haspel’s appointment as head of the CIA was not “serious” because “he [ was going to die anyway. “
The opposition of Senator John McCain to the nomination of the candidate Gina Haspel to lead the CIA is not serious because “it will die anyway”: the words of a female employee of the White House to this respected figure of the American politics sparked a heated debate.
According to US media reports, the remark about this senator with brain cancer emanates from Kelly Sadler, a member of Donald Trump’s communications team, who was speaking on May 10 at a meeting.
Asked several times on this subject, Sarah Sanders, spokeswoman for the White House, refused to apologize on behalf of the executive or to address the issue head-on, claiming to have no comment to make on remarks held “at an internal meeting”.
“We respect all Americans,” she said, confirming that Kelly Sadler was still working in the White House.
Indignation from all sides
A few hours earlier, John McCain’s daughter, Meghan, felt that the author of this remark should be fired.
“I do not understand the environment in which [these words] would be acceptable and that you can come back to work the next day and keep your job,” she said on ABC. “Do not worry about our family, we are strong,” she added.
According to the American press, Kelly Sadler apologized to Meghan McCain for her comments.
John McCain’s wife, Cindy, also reacted, “May I remind you that my husband has a family, seven children and five grandchildren,” she wrote on Twitter, speaking directly to Kelly Sadler.
— Cindy McCain (@cindymccain) May 10, 2018
Former Democratic Vice President Joe Biden, a close friend of Senator McCain, was also indignant. “People were wondering when the administration would bottom out on decency. It happened yesterday, “he said in a statement.
“Given the White House’s lack of respect for John and others, this collaborator is not the exception to the rule, but her incarnation,” he added.
The 81-year-old Republican senator was diagnosed last year with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer, and has been withdrawing for several months in Arizona. Very few parliamentarians or politicians dare to publicly mention his eventual death.
Since his fief, John McCain has opposed the appointment of Gina Haspel, chosen by President Trump to lead the CIA where she spent more than 30 years, because of her controversial role in extensive interrogation programs after the September 11th. For at least part of 2002, she had led a secret CIA prison in Thailand, where detainees suspected of belonging to al-Qaeda were tortured.