Aides tried to get Trump to stop attacking McCain in hopes of clinching Arizona: report

President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump's Facebook ban to stay in place, board rules Trump allies launching nonprofit focused on voter fraud DOJ asks for outside lawyer to review Giuliani evidence MORE’s campaign aides attempted to stop him from attacking the late Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainBudowsky: Liz Cheney vs. conservatives in name only Cheney slams Trump on 'big lie' over election Exclusive — Cruz, Rubio ramp up criticisms of big business MORE (R-Ariz.) in hopes of clinching Arizona, The New York Times reported Wednesday. 

Campaign aides reportedly raised various theories about what led to Fox News announcing Arizona for Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenCensus results show White House doubling down on failure Poll: Americans back new spending, tax hikes on wealthy, but remain wary of economic impact True immigration reform requires compromise from both sides of the aisle MORE late Tuesday night, including that Trump did not stop criticizing McCain, a fellow Republican and former prisoner of war, even after he died in 2018.

The Associated Press ultimately joined Fox News in calling the state for Biden.


Some aides told the Times that Trump also had dismissed calls from Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDanielRonna Romney McDanielNew York Post deletes story alleging Kamala Harris book given to migrant children Virginia GOP reverses course, will let those with religious obligations cast absentee votes for Saturday convention The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - GOP makes infrastructure play; Senate passes Asian hate crimes bill MORE and former campaign manager Brad ParscaleBrad ParscaleAides tried to get Trump to stop attacking McCain in hopes of clinching Arizona: report MORE to spend more time in Arizona during the campaign. The aides said he resisted their requests because he did not like traveling west and spending the night on the road.

Some campaign staff also reportedly questioned the campaign’s spending, proposing that if more money was available to spend in the states Biden barely won, maybe the president could have taken them. But others stood up for the previous spending, as it helped gain Latino support in Florida, the Times reported. 

The Trump campaign did not immediately return a request for comment. 

Fox News’s call of Arizona going blue with only 73 percent of the state’s vote counted reportedly left the president and campaign members upset. Adviser Jason Miller challenged the call on Twitter and requested that Fox News retract it. 

But Fox News defended the decision, with Arnon Mishkin, the director of the Fox News Decision Desk, going on the air to say, “I’m sorry, the president is not going to be able to take over and win enough votes to eliminate that 7-point lead that the former vice president has.”


The Associated Press also called the state for Biden early Wednesday morning, but other news organizations such as NBC News, CNN and The New York Times have yet to announce. 

Sources also told the Times that the president’s son-in-law, Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerRepublicans request documents on Kerry's security clearance process Iran moves closer to a diplomatic breakthrough that may upset Israel Trump alumni launch America First Policy Institute MORE, reached out to Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch about the network’s projection. 

The Times also reported that Arizona Gov. Doug DuceyDoug DuceyArizona governor to resume job-seeking requirements for unemployment benefits More abortion restrictions passed this week compared to any week in last decade: analysis Arizona governor signs bill blocking abortions based on genetic issues MORE (R) was on the phone all night with administration and campaign officials, saying there were more Republican votes to be counted. The governor took to Twitter late Tuesday and said it was “far too early to call” the presidential race in Arizona.

The campaign was faced with tougher news on Wednesday, as Michigan and Wisconsin were called for the former vice president. The Trump campaign has filed lawsuits to stop the vote count in Michigan, Georgia and Pennsylvania.