GOP senator: Trump's criticism of McCain 'deplorable'

Sen. Johnny IsaksonJohnny IsaksonGOP senator presses VA after veteran reportedly bitten by ants at nursing home GOP buys JonOssoff.com after Democrat launches Georgia Senate bid Jon Ossoff launching Georgia Senate campaign MORE (R-Ga.) on Wednesday said President TrumpDonald John TrumpTed Cruz knocks New York Times for 'stunning' correction on Kavanaugh report US service member killed in Afghanistan Pro-Trump website edited British reality star's picture to show him wearing Trump hat MORE's criticism of the late Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCain The 13 Republicans needed to pass gun-control legislation Biden's debate performance renews questions of health At debate, Warren and Buttigieg tap idealism of Obama, FDR MORE (R-Ariz.) is "deplorable" and showed a "lack of respect" for the Arizona Republican's military service.
 
"It's deplorable what he said. That's what I called it from the floor of the Senate," Isakson told a Georgia radio station. "It will be deplorable seven months from now, if he says it again."
 
ADVERTISEMENT
Isakson's interview comes after he warned that he would speak out against Trump's renewed criticism of McCain, who he has repeatedly lashed out at the GOP senator's vote against the 2017 Republican health care bill, in addition to mocking him for being captured as a fighter pilot during the Vietnam War.
 
During the interview, Isakson raised broader concerns about criticizing veterans, saying, "We should never reduce the service that people give to this country."
 
He added that Trump's remarks showed a "lack of respect for his service" that he didn't believe is "appropriate."
 
The president and McCain had a rocky relationship after Trump, when he was a presidential candidate, criticized the senator for being a prisoner of war in Vietnam.
 
"I was never a fan of John McCain, and I never will be,” Trump told reporters during an Oval Office meeting this week with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.

Trump also relitigated the 2017 ObamaCare repeal-and-replace vote, saying he was "unhappy" with McCain's surprise "no" vote, which effectively ended the GOP effort to overhaul the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

“He campaigned on repealing and replacing ObamaCare for years and then he got to a vote and he said ‘thumbs down,’” Trump added. “I think that's disgraceful, plus there are other things.”
 
Trump's remarks sparked backlash from some lawmakers, including Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer, Pelosi push Trump to back universal background check bill Sinema says she would back Kennedy in race against Markey Democrats threaten to withhold defense votes over wall MORE (D-N.Y.), who announced on Wednesday that he would revive his effort to rename the Russell Senate Office building after McCain.
 
Schumer announced in August that he would try to rename the Senate office building but quickly faced political headwinds. His new effort is likely to face the same challenges.

Isakson said on Wednesday that he would "fight for the legacy" of Richard Russell, a Democratic senator from Georgia.

"Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer, Pelosi push Trump to back universal background check bill Sinema says she would back Kennedy in race against Markey Democrats threaten to withhold defense votes over wall MORE is just playing politics," he added.
 
 
 
Isakson noted that he had dinner with McConnell on Tuesday but didn't tell him that he was planning to criticism Trump over his McCain comments. 
 
"I appreciate what he said about John, and he's 100 percent right," Isakson added about McConnell.