Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) made his way through Donald Trump and a hard place and pulled off a tricky win in a topsy-turvy political year.
McCain’s victory over his Democratic opponent Rep. Ann Kirpatrick came after weeks of leading the polls by double digits.
McCain became one of Donald Trump’s many punching bags this election when in July, the GOP nominee for president mocked the decorated Vietnam War veteran and said he’s “not a war hero” because he was “captured.” McCain waited to formally abandon Trump until a 2005 tape recording of the businessman bragging about groping women without their permission was published in October.
Before that, McCain was criticized by Kirkpatrick for supporting the GOP nominee just to get through his party’s primary, where he faced a Trump supporter. He avoided the topic of Trump and criticized Kirkpatrick, who represents the state’s largest district, for being too liberal to represent Arizona until the tape was leaked.
McCain, who ran for president against Barack Obama in 2008, was one of the most senior Republicans to take a stand against Trump.