John McCain doesn’t seem to want Trump at his funeral

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) appears to be giving the thumbs-down on President Donald Trump attending his funeral.

According to the New York Times on Saturday, members of the ailing maverick’s inner circle “have informed the White House that their current plan for his funeral is for Vice President Mike Pence to attend the service to be held in Washington’s National Cathedral but not President Trump.”

The report comes as McCain — who was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer in July 2017 — appears to be in worsening health. He has been increasingly frail in recent months, according to reports, and was admitted to the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix in April for surgery to treat “intestinal infection related to diverticulitis.” On Friday, his daughter — the commentator Meghan McCain — tweeted that she would be taking a brief leave from the View and would be “going home to Arizona to be with my family.”

RELATED: John McCain and family through the years

John McCain and family through the years
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John McCain and family through the years
Ok one more. @senjohnmccain with me at our first Christmas as a married couple.
@senjohnmccain @zelda.frenchie.1 and our two boys Jack and Jimmy enjoying the morning at the Navy Memorial.
@DBacks game with @meghanmccain and. @senjohnmccain
So many years ago. @meghanmccain @senjohnmccain at her Columbia University graduation.
One of my favorite family photos. An oldie but a goody! @senjohnmccain @meghanmccain
Thank all of you for the wonderful thoughts. @senjohnmccain is doing well. We as a family will face the next hurdle together. One thing I do know is he is the toughest person I know. He is my hero and I love him with all my heart.
The highlight of my day. ❤️🍴🇺🇸
My rock @cindymccain ❤️❤️❤️
Happy early birthday Dad - I love you with all my heart. ❤️🇺🇸🌵🎂🍰
After dinner talks with Dad 🌵❤️🇺🇸
Hiking the eclipse with Dad 🌵🌙
To everyone who has sent me and my family such kind words of strength and prayers, thank you from the bottom of my heart, it really has been helping me. We start my fathers last (first round) of radiation and chemotherapy today. This last month has easily been the most challenging and difficult of my life. I come from a long lineage of warriors and I have never been more grateful for the strength and fortitude that has been passed down to me, I am relying on it now more than ever. My natural inclination is always to be open and share my life but at the moment I am still in a place where I just want and need to be around my family and am asking for your understanding and patience. To those of you out there living with #GBM or who have a family member or loved one living with #GBM, you are my absolute heroes. We are in this fight together, sending you all love and light. #FUCKCANCER
Happy Fathers Day to my father @senjohnmccain. This picture is how I always think of you, relaxed, in Arizona, grilling us ribs and listening to Frank Sinatra. Thank you for teaching me how to love life and seize every moment. Thank you for exposing me to the world (it's good and bad) and teaching me about character, conviction and having true grit. Finally thank you for always giving me something to believe in, in a world where it has become increasingly harder to find. I love you with all my heart. 🇺🇸❤️

“Thank you all again for your prayers, patience, understanding and compassion during this time,” she tweeted. “It means the world to me and my entire family.”

The elder McCain, 81, has had a tumultuous relationship with Trump, who infamously mocked his military service during the campaign.

“He’s a war hero because he was captured,” Trump said in an appearance at the Family Leadership Summit in 2015. “I like people who weren’t captured.”

Trump has also bashed McCain for his July 2017 vote against the Republicans’ “skinny repeal” of the Affordable Care Act — which he delivered in a dramatic thumbs-down vote late in the night, killing the Senate Republicans’ bill.

“John McCain never had any intention of voting for this Bill, which his Governor loves,” Trump tweeted in September. “Let Arizona down!”

McCain, for his part, has frequently called out the president, and apparently makes his case against Trump and his vision of America in his final memoir, which comes out later this month.

As the Times notes, McCain’s controversial choice of Sarah Palin to be his running mate in 2008 is believed by some to have helped lay the groundwork for Trump’s rise to power. In his memoir and an accompanying documentary, according to the Times, he expresses regret for having chosen the ex-Alaska governor instead of Joseph Lieberman — the Connecticut independent who served as Al Gore’s running mate in 2000 and is one of McCain’s closest friends.

McCain’s would not be the only funeral of a high-profile political figure to be skipped by Trump; last month, Melania Trump attended former first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral in the president’s absence. Trump golfed at his Mar-a-Lago resort instead to “avoid disruptions due to added security, and out of respect for the Bush Family and friends attending the service.”

McCain is “still in the fight,” the Times reported Saturday, but prominent friends from the political world have been visiting with him in recent weeks, “telling him they love him, how much he has meant to them — and together they are taking care of unfinished business.”

Former Vice President Joe Biden, a friend of the senator’s, visited him last week, talking with the larger-than-life Republican outside on the deck of his Arizona ranch.

“I wanted to let him know how much I love him and how much he matters to me and how much I admire his integrity and his courage,” Biden told the Times. “I wanted to see my friend.”

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