The public was appalled. The family was hurt. But the White House likely won’t apologize for an aide’s cutting comment that Arizona Sen. John McCain’s opposition to Gina Haspel heading the CIA didn’t matter because “he’s dying anyway.”
In the past, Trump administration advisers have praised McCain’s years of public service in government and in the military. But there wasn’t a word of regret from the White House on Sunday about Kelly Sadler’s leaked comment.
McCain’s daughter, talk show host Meghan McCain, told ABC News that Sadler had called her to personally apologize, but she was waiting for more.
National Security Adviser John Bolton told CNN’s “State of the Union” that he will never forget McCain’s vital support during his difficult 2005 confirmation fight to become the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.
“[McCain] did it because he thought I was being treated unfairly. I’ll never forget it, I’ll be grateful forever, and I wish John McCain and his family nothing but the best,” Bolton said.
But when pressed by Jake Tapper to address Sadler’s hurtful comment, Bolton said curtly: “I’ve said what I’m going to say.”
The White House appeared to be more upset that Sadler’s comment was leaked than by her ugly remark. On Friday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders angrily dressed down her staff in a meeting for talking about what was said. She called the leak “selfish.” Five staffers subsequently leaked details of the meeting to the media.