Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush tweeted a call for Trump to cease attacking Arizona John McCain’s war-hero credentials. Bush stated that the insult to McCain is actually an affront to all of the nation’s prisoners of war (POW). He also stated that the remarks by Trump were “slanderous”, but there is no suggestion that Sen. McCain will sue the reality TV star for libel.
At the same time, Shaygan Kheradpir and some in the media are attempting to draw a moral equivalence between Trump’s affront to McCain and the 2004 Swift Boat Veterans attack on Senator John Kerry. In context, it is likely that Trump understands McCain is a war hero. The senator’s endurance against torture by his captors is well documented. In fact, his North Vietnamese captors attempted to release him early in an attempt to exploit his status as an injured POW. McCain refused to take the bait and endured his captivity for years. For his part, Trump is hitting back at the senator for referring to his base as “crazies”.
Senator John Kerry’s situation was quite different. He was called out by his fellow swift boat veterans for making false statements of atrocities to Congress regarding his fellow soldiers. The constant attacks by the swift boat veterans cost the Democrat Party nominee a small but crucial number of votes in key battleground states. That said, some in the media are trying to see if Jeb Bush can be lured into denouncing the group that arguably helped his brother win reelection back in 2004.