Donald Trump has once again attacked the family of the late John McCain after his widow endorsed Joe Biden for the White House, saying he was “never a fan” of the senator in a Wednesday morning tweet.
The president targeted Cindy McCain a day after she officially endorsed the former vice president in the 2020 elections and described Mr Biden as a politician who “stands up for our values as a nation” in a statement.
Blasting the former senator’s wife, Mr Trump wrote: “I hardly know Cindy McCain other than having put her on a Committee at her husband’s request.”
“Joe Biden was John McCain’s lapdog,” he added. “So many BAD decisions on Endless Wars & the V.A., which I brought from a horror show to HIGH APPROVAL.”
“Never a fan of John,” Mr Trump wrote. “Cindy can have Sleepy Joe!”
The comments come as Ms McCain finds herself at the heart of a burgeoning coalition of prominent Republicans both past and present who have endorsed Mr Biden for the presidency, not because of his positions on policy, but instead what she has said is his moral character and commitment to American values.
In a tweet of her own, Ms McCain wrote on Tuesday: “My husband John lived by a code: country first. We are Republicans, yes, but Americans foremost. There's only one candidate in this race who stands up for our values as a nation, and that is @JoeBiden.”
Mr Trump regularly criticised Mr McCain while running for president and later when the two worked together in Washington, denying he was a war hero and saying he preferred veterans “who weren’t captured” by the enemy during their service.
He also rebuked the late senator’s position on health care and blamed him in part for the Republican Party’s failure to repeal components of the Affordable Care Act in 2017.
He appeared to be once again sharpening his criticism of the prominent conservative political family as Ms McCain officially endorsed his opponent.
The Arizona Republican widow to the late senator spoke at the Democratic National Convention about her husband’s friendship with Mr Biden, though she did not pledge her support to the Democratic nominee at the time.
Mr Trump remained in a close race against Mr Biden in Arizona, a state that some analysts have said has the potential of flipping to blue come the November election.
Other prominent Republicans like Ms McCain have also announced their support for Mr Biden, including Jennifer Horn, Rick Wilson and George Conway, all notable conservatives who launched the anti-Trump political group called Project Lincoln.
Mr Biden meanwhile thanked Ms McCain for her endorsement this week, writing in a statement posted to Twitter: “Cindy — I'm deeply honored to have your support and your friendship. This election is bigger than any one political party. It requires all of us to come together as one America to restore the soul of the nation. Together, we'll get it done.”