John McCain returns to Senate, says they’re not ‘president’s subordinates’
ABCNews.com(WASHINGTON) — Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., was welcomed back to the Senate floor with a round of applause after returning to D.C. less than a week after disclosing his brain tumor diagnosis.
Senators from both sides of the aisle gave their colleague a standing ovation when he arrived on the floor to cast his vote Tuesday.
McCain decided to return to Washington quickly to be able to vote on a procedural motion that would allow senators to debate the Republican health care plan that would replace Obamacare.
McCain cast his vote in favor of the motion. It passed, allowing Republicans to advance their health care bill.
Following a tie-breaking vote by Vice President Mike Pence, McCain was given the opportunity to address his colleagues.
He stressed the importance of the Senate, issuing what appeared to be a warning to President Donald Trump.
“We are not the president’s subordinates. We are his equal,” McCain said of the legislative branch.
McCain also spoke at length about the at-times acrimonious relations within the Senate and urged his colleagues to work across the aisle.
“Our deliberations can still be important and useful, but I think we can all agree that they haven’t been overburdened by greatness lately,” he said.
“Stop listening to the bombastic loudmouths on the radio and television and the internet. To hell with them!” he said in a line that was met by applause.
“What have we to lose by trying to work together to find those solutions?” he asked.
McCain wrapped up his speech by saying that he has “every intention” of returning to the Senate after treating his tumor, warning that his return will give “many of you cause to regret all the nice things you said about me.”
President Trump, who has a turbulent history with McCain, praised him as an “American hero” for coming back to vote.
During a joint news conference with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, who is visiting the White House Tuesday, Trump opened his remarks by saying that McCain is a “very brave man” who “made a tough trip to get here and vote.”
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