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John McCain in new book: I’m freer now to speak my mind

Sen John McCain

The senator has penned a book while coping with brain cancer. Here’s what he has to say in the final chapter of his remarkable life.


In a new book, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) writes that his battle with brain cancer has given him a sense of liberation to vote and speak his mind.
“This is my last term,” McCain writes in his upcoming book, The Restless Wave, which he co-authored with former adviser Mark Salter. An excerpt of the book was posted Monday (April 30) on Apple News.
“If I hadn’t admitted that to myself before this summer, a stage 4 cancer diagnosis acts as ungentle persuasion,” McCain continues. “I’m freer than colleagues who will face the voters again. I can speak my mind without fearing the consequences much. And I can vote my conscience without worry. I don’t think I’m free to disregard my constituents’ wishes, far from it. I don’t feel excused from keeping pledges I made. Nor do I wish to harm my party’s prospects. But I do feel a pressing responsibility to give Americans my best judgment.”
The book, which comes as McCain remains in Arizona undergoing treatment, includes sharp shots at President Donald Trump, according to the Apple News write up. “He has declined to distinguish the actions of our government from the crimes of despotic ones,” McCain writes. “The appearance of toughness, or a reality show facsimile of toughness, seems to matter more than any of our values.”
Describing the political environment overall, the Arizona Republican writes that he is dismayed by the “scarcity of humility in politics these days.”
“I suspect it’s never been in abundant supply in most human enterprises,” McCain writes according to the excerpt. “And I don’t mean modesty. Any politician worth a damn can fake modesty. Humility is the self-knowledge that you possess as much inherent dignity as anyone else, and not one bit more. Among its other virtues, humility makes for more productive politics.”
He also pushes Americans to seek presidential candidates who promise to create relationships across political parties and are willing to compromise to address national issues, saying that “their humility and honesty commend them for the job.”
“Before I leave I’d like to see our politics begin to return to the purposes and practices that distinguish our history from the history of other nations. I would like to see us recover our sense that we are more alike than different,” McCain writes at the end of the excerpt.
“We are citizens of a republic made of shared ideals forged in a new world to replace the tribal enmities that tormented the old one. Even in times of political turmoil such as these, we share that awesome heritage and the responsibility to embrace it.”
The excerpt comes as McCain undergoes treatment in Arizona, where he has stayed since December.
The former GOP presidential nominee has spoken out about Trump before. During an interview last year, he said that he doesn’t think the president has any “principles and beliefs.”
McCain’s book will be released May 22.