A month ago, Cindy McCain narrated a video about the lifelong friendship between Joe Biden and her late husband, Senator John McCain. The video aired at the Democratic National Convention, and while Ms. McCain did not plainly state that she would vote for Biden in 2020, many assumed as much. Now, John McCain’s widow says she’s all-in for Biden.
On Wednesday, Ms. McCain appeared on all three major network morning shows to deliver her unambiguous endorsement of the Democratic nominee. “I want a president that will show me the kind of demeanor that will reach across the aisle and work with the Republicans and move this country forward,” she explained.
She also said she hoped Republican women “will maybe take a different look and take a harder look at the race and perhaps step over the line the way I did. It’s not about a party or a particular system.” Instead, she argued, the election is a choice between a noble leader like Joe Biden, and four more years of chaos under President Trump.
John McCain was the Republican Party’s nominee for president in 2008, a race he ran against Barack Obama and Joe Biden. But the Republican Party has changed drastically since then, particularly with the rise of Donald Trump, who has frequently expressed his disapproval of the late McCain. In 2015, Trump insisted that the Vietnam vet was “not a war hero” because he spent five years in captivity. “I like people who weren’t captured,” Trump infamously stated. Since then, he has repeated his attacks against McCain, both before and after the Arizona Senator’s death.
In a recent article in The Atlantic, sources claimed that Trump was incensed when flags were lowered to half-staff after McCain’s passing. “The guy was a loser,” he reportedly told confidantes. In the same article, sources claim that Trump used the words “losers” and “suckers” to describe dead US soldiers on multiple occasions, though the White House has denied such allegations.
Still, Cindy McCain says that the story was the breaking point for her in deciding whether to endorse Biden.
“It’s a combination of things,” she said of her rationale for supporting the Democrat, “but I do believe that our men and women that serve in the military are not losers and certainly the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice are not losers.” She added that Biden, whose own son served in the US Army in Iraq, “not only understand the military, but he cares for them.”
Ultimately, Ms. McCain summed up her argument this way:
“What I want from my country is the same thing everybody wants: I want a president who has my back, a president that will respect our troops, and a president that’s willing to listen and talk to both sides.”
Women for Biden
Ms. McCain says she’s willing to do whatever she can to ensure that Biden wins the election, including campaigning for him. The Biden campaign, meanwhile, hopes Ms. McCain can assist them in reaching out to suburban women, who they view as an essential voting bloc. Many think that Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign failed to reach out to suburban female voters, taking for granted that they would support Clinton. But that turned out to be untrue. In fact, 47% of votes cast for Donald Trump in 2016 came from woman voters.
Still, suburban women have been credited with the Democratic takeover of the House of Representatives in 2018, thanks not only to female voters, but also to an historic number of suburban female candidates. Now, as Arizona emerges as a battleground state that could swing blue for the first time in a generation, the widow of a former Republican icon could be a key player in securing the state’s eleven electoral votes for Joe Biden.