Trump Slams War Veteran John McCain: ‘I Like People Who Weren’t Captured’

donald trump
Scott Olson/Getty Images

UPDATED: GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump took shots at John McCain’s military history on Saturday, arguing that the Arizona Senator was “not a war hero.”

“He’s a war hero because he was captured,” Trump said. “I like people that weren’t captured.”

McCain, who was a prisoner of war in Vietnam for six years, recently criticized Trump for stirring “the crazies” for his controversial remarks on immigration.

The New York mogul told moderator Frank Luntz that he supported McCain’s failed presidential bid in 2008 with $1 million in campaign contributions. “I’ve never liked him as much after that,” he said. “I don’t like losers.”

Despite backlash, Trump made it clear on Sunday that he would not be apologizing to the war veteran. He told Martha Raddatz on ABC’s “This Week” that he had no plans to say sorry, touting a positive response from the Family Leadership Council Summit.

“When I left the room, it was a total standing ovation,” said Trump. “It was wonderful to see. Nobody was insulted.”

He went on to say that McCain has “done nothing to help the vets.”

“I’m very disappointed in John McCain because the vets are horribly treated in this country,” he said. “I’m fighting for the vets. I’ve done a lot for the vets.”

NBC recently severed ties with Trump following his scathing rhetoric on Mexican immigrants.

Last week, Trump’s campaign revealed that NBC had paid him over $213 million for his 14 seasons on “The Apprentice.” NBCUniversal and Trump were also partners in the Miss Universe and Miss USA beauty pageants. Spanish-language broadcaster Univision ultimately cut its ties to Trump as well after he called Hispanics “rapists” and drug smugglers.

On Saturday, Trump refused to back down from his remarks that sparked national outrage.

“I’m so proud of the fact I got a dialogue started on illegal immigration,” he said. “I’m very happy.”

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  1. sharon says:

    Trump is a ass.. If he got in we might as well the end is really near. He is one of the Antichrist. He will destroy us all. He should talk. He did not serve his country the way the others did. He sat on his ass in the states while the others had to fight over seas. To bad he did no get captured. He would have never lasted.

  2. Nicholas P. Schiavone says:

    Every writer who comments in support of Trump lacks one thing: a real good reason.
    Common Sense seems to be “Uncommon” now.
    As Trump gazes upon his fool-ish followers
    one is inclined to suspect he is saying to himself: “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
    One might also be tempted to think the Donald took the line from Circus Impresario, P.T. Barnum. Alas, the is phrase was most likely spoken by David Hannum, a critic of P. T. Barnum and his Circus Public.
    The real meaning is more “Many people are gullible, and we can expect this to continue.”
    So a vote for Trump is a vote to turn America into a real political circus.
    And Trump? He’s no Ringleader!
    He’s the biggest clown around!!!
    Saints, Preserve us from this evil madness. Amen

  3. He didn’t call Hispanics rapists and drug smugglers. He said that about a select group of illegal immigrants. This is another way the man receives support: you’ve warped his words and twisted them to be more inflammatory than they were. You show that clearly by using the quotation marks around only one word: “rapists.” I’m not saying I’m with Trump or against him, I’m saying that when you play around with the truth and manipulate facts for such little benefit you’ve exposed your own lack of substance and all around obedience to the BS machine.

    If you’re going to call out McCain on something, call him out on being Israel’s lapdog – along with Lindsey Graham.

  4. Clay Beardmore says:

    Just because one is captured by the enemy and held as a POW does NOT make one a hero. There are too many real heroes that don’t need John McCain’s service (although laudable) to become a qualifying factor.

    A Vietnam Vet (1968)

  5. Nicholas P. Schiavone says:

    The Value of an Alter Ego in Business & Politics. Dear GOP, If we stand for nothing,
    we fall for everything! #StopTrumpNow

  6. alan peters says:

    While I totally support his anti-illegal immigration stance, I hope Trump will curtail his “shooting off his mouth” at everything under the sun. He had me ready to vote Republican, initially. (I’m a minority person, who usually voted for the democrats.)

  7. Nicholas P. Schiavone says:

    It’s time for the GOP to take Donald Trump
    out of the 2016 Presidential Race.
    Trump’s attack on Senator McCain (R) is evil, cruel, imbecilic & disgusting in the extreme.
    This is also an attack on all captured U.S. Service Men & Women throughout America’s History.
    #StopTrumpNow

  8. breth6 says:

    I don’t know what this has to do with entertainment, but I guess it is all bread and circuses anymore….

  9. Stanley O says:

    Donald, you’ve crossed the line. The fact that your fat ego prevents you to apologize shows what kind of President you’d be. Well, you’ll never be President. Time for you to go back to your circus. You’re FIRED!

  10. Wayne powers says:

    Well , I see again that this arrogant, overbearing, and repulsive Jack ads that we call The Donald has stooped the lowest of the lowest by degrading the honor of some of our finest war heroes. Let that sissy trump spend a few years in a P.O.W. camp and he’d have that smug look and cocky chip knocked off his shoulder. It sickens me to see Trump throw his weight around because of his wealth and power.

  11. Alex says:

    McCain was captured because he was shot down and broke both arms and a leg when he hit the water after he punched out, he wasn’t able to make a run for it. This is going to piss off everyone who was a POW, and family members who have a son or daughter who is MIA. I like Trump but he shouldn’t have gone there.

  12. M. says:

    McCain has long been a sellout. I think he was brainwashed and is a broken man.

  13. They should caption this article: “This was written with absolutely no liberal bias whatsoever. We are not scared by the thought of a real, red-blooded American with balls running for office.”

  14. I think both sides Trump and McCain are at fault. McCain saying what he thinks and McCain upset when Trump stated what he said. Both parties are no angels but I think illegal immigration is very serious problem for our country. I’m 70 years old and so far Democrats nor Republicans have done little to nothing about this escalating problem. Talk is cheap– now we need action…At least Trump sees it as a major problem. If I am crazy for wanting a strong America and a strong leader to surface in 2016 for President so be it. We have had enough of politicians who promise the sky and then when elected nothing changes–whether it be Democrat or Republican

    • Well you’ve had 6 decades now to realize that there are no sides – left and right is all a spectacle. Their voting records are 95+% identical. Seriously. They’re all friends on the weekends, pretend enemies during the week. Washington is not hopelessly divided, it’s hopelessly intertwined. Until we have Congressional term limits and sweeping campaign finance reform it’s all a farce. People think of the government as some impossibly large force that can’t be dealt with – when it’s only 500 or 600 people up there who NEVER have to tag out because us dolts keep voting them in!

      In terms of human nature, they’d have to all be angels and saints to NOT become corrupt – We send the same several hundred back to session every few years. Then complain. Then mostly send that same few hundred back, then complain, then do it again. We practically hand them the rope to hang us with!

  15. Mama Grizzly says:

    This is another unacceptable comment by Donald Trump and it is worse because he is insulting John McCain specifically. If this is allowed to pass without an apology, this is another blight on the entire Republic of America.

  16. Guest says:

    I really hope he doesn’t spend 99.9 percent of his campaign talking sh*t about others and actually spend it by talking about how he’s going to change this country.

  17. David says:

    It seems clear that Trump is saying these things to generate attention for himself, and we’re all of us falling for it.

  18. JE Vizzusi says:

    I suppose everyone is fair game in the world of political mudslinging. Trump the other day yelled; I’m not a politician! But he is acting like one more and more everyday now. McCain has always been “hands off” because of his war record.

  19. Mitchum says:

    McCain is terrible, but Trump went too far with that one. I’m still voting for Trump at this point, but he needs to reign in his mouth and ego. Trump tells it like it is, not what people want to hear like Clinton, who I think would be 10 times worst than Obama.

  20. rocco says:

    I’m a die hard Lib – but love Donald Trump. His politics stink, but his view of the Republican candidates are totally on target. I admire his candor

    • Jane says:

      Trump may say it like he sees it but that is not presidential . He’s just an unfiltered rich kid, smart in some areas but he would be a disaster dealing with congress , the senate, and an embarrassment in the international global arena. He lacks diplomacy and basic respect for others opinions

      • Clay Beardmore says:

        Presidential or not, Trump is our best bet. He tells it like he sees it, not by what is PC. Diplomacy has got us nothing, but a place to send our taxes.

        He must be doing something right, or he wouldn’t be rich.

      • Mark Fischer says:

        I totally agree with Jane. As much as I find it refreshing to hear someone saying what is on their mind without worrying about always pleasing the majority. I don’t see Trump as presidential. I can’t stand Hillary and many of the others, but they are seasoned politicians and understand how to deal diplomatically with their opposition. If you disagree with Trump, he attacks you personally and is never diplomatic. Could you imaging Trump’s foreign policy and the first time he may strongly disagree with another World leader?

  21. Autumn Rose says:

    I can’t stand McCain or his politics but Trump’s way off base here on the POW’s. Still, McCain has said some really ugly and hurtful things about people he was opposed to in the past so I’m not going to lose any sleep because someone does the same to him. When someone like McCain spews hate for a living I kind of find it humorous when that ugliness comes flying back and smacks him in the face. Trump’s nothing but a clown we already knew that, so you can’t really act surprised with his boorish ways.

    • Jane says:

      No diplomacy exactly. One has to be diplomatic in politics which can come off as lacking transparency but is often necessary to get things accomplished. Very easy for everyone to criticize but non of us are on that chess game
      Trump would be a disaster .

  22. Xmasevevbaby says:

    This will be the moment that folks started to turn on this flaccid little pickle. John McCain’s politics ain’t my cup of tea, but his sacrifice for this country makes him an All-American Hero in my book.

  23. Jacques Strappe says:

    Donald “Turnip”

  24. Jacques Strappe says:

    Okay, who is holding Trump’s brain hostage? Please keep it and do whatever you want with it.

  25. Stella says:

    Trump: “I like people who weren’t captured.”

    I wonder how he feels about soldiers who were maimed or killed? Trump is scum.

    • Clay Beardmore says:

      Please explain what “captured” has to do with “maimed or killed?” Thanks.

      A Vietnam Vet (1968)

  26. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> says:

    McCain’s war record is a lie. Google Songbird McCain, you weak-minded lemmings.

  27. Dick Enormous says:

    Trump is really nuts. He may have more money than Citibank, but he’s crazy.

  28. thomasmc1957 says:

    I like people who don’t sound like complete idiots every time they open their mouths.

    Bit, to complete idiots, he is their hero.

  29. Chuck Kopsho says:

    I’ll give it to y’all. Trump lays it on the line. Thank god he’s not one of those mealy mouthed politicians who’ll tell you what you want to hear, but one who’ll tell you what you need to hear. To hell with the RINO’s, to hell with political correctness.

    • Stella says:

      We don’t “need” to hear anything from him.

      The people attracted to authoritarian personalities like Trump are sheep who “need” somebody to tell them what to do. They will follow any crackpot who labels himself a “truth teller.”

      • >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> says:

        The people attracted to authoritarian personalities like Obama are sheep who “need” somebody to tell them what to do. They will follow any crackpot who labels himself a “truth teller.”

        There. Fixed it for ya.

  30. McCain is the biggest supporter of illegals in our country today and never misses a chance to vote Obama’s way,it will be a great day when he is out of office.

  31. BobC. says:

    Maybe Donald Trump should ask Rush Limbaugh to be his running mate. They seem like they’ve been separated at birth from the same snake
    pit.

  32. I’m sorry, but to me, anyone that served in a war time is a hero. And let’s see hoe Donald will hate himself when he is the loser ( in the election).

  33. Jon Wallace says:

    Lets see if I have this right; Don does like “losers.” Maybe that’s why Don won’t or can’t loose weight. McCain a loser? McCain was captured while in harms way by serving his country. He endured 6 years of extreme hardship. How is that a loser? Don you were never captured because maybe you never served. Don, you are emotionally fragile and physically soft. How are you “fit” to run the country?

  34. Jacques Strappe says:

    Geez, Trump, if a military person gets wounded or captured by the enemy, I guess those people are worthless to you. I would guess that more and more Americans are not liking you every time you open your mouth but a big shout out of thanks for helping Democrats.

  35. Joseph A. Smith says:

    Trump should hang his head in shame for this comment. He has demeaned a true hero and forgot to tell us that the Trumps hid him under a rock so that he would not have to defend our country. Trump – go to hell!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If you have the guts I’d like to tell you face to face that you are an ignorant ass

    • sallywoo says:

      How is McCain a hero?

      • Corporal Bigsocks says:

        6 years in a Vietnamese POW camp says he’s a hero to me. I may never agree with his politics, but I will ever honor his sacrifice and service.

      • Jacques Strappe says:

        I suppose the same way a wounded vet is considered a hero. Would Trump say that he likes military people who don’t lose a leg, or an arm or their life?

  36. Ted says:

    Try learning how to spell check guys, you’re a news organization, sheesh.

    “Univision ultimately severed its tries”

  37. Fred Mertz says:

    That comment is utterly shocking. What Trump has said previously has made him the driver of the Clown Car. Now he just used the car for a hit-and-run.

    • sallywoo says:

      This is another junk post from Variety to flare up idiots. Trump is saying what many are saying yet don’t have the access he does. McCain and his daughter are idiots. And McCains a loser in war and politics. Say it Mr. Trump – someone has too.

      • kenjimoto says:

        There’s another subtext to this He likes people “that” weren’t captured. Like Mexican illegals, for example?

      • rjoguillory says:

        …if you read up on McCain’s supposed incarceration during the POW years…one hardly finds a … “hero”…in the narrative…it is my understanding that his cowardice led to the deaths of fellow American Servicemen…but because his Daddy was a High-Ranking Admiral…little Johnny got off scot-free and has become one of the most corrupt politicians of our time…his legacy will that of a traitor…
        RJ O’Guillory

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