Sen. John McCain, two other senators will support Donald Trump as GOP nominee

May 5, 2016, 4:28 PM | Updated: May 6, 2016, 11:28 am
LISTEN: Senator John McCain - Senator Tom Cotton (Arkansas) - Senator Dan Sullivan (Alaska)

PHOENIX — Sens. John McCain, Tom Cotton and Dan Sullivan said Thursday they will support the Republican nominee for president, even if it is Donald Trump.

“I’ve always said I would support the nominee of the party,” McCain (R-Arizona) told KTAR News 92.3 FM Mac & Gaydos. “It’s the party of Ronald Reagan and Teddy Roosevelt.”

Both Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Sullivan (R-Alaska) echoed the longtime senator’s words, though all were hesitant to say outright they supported Trump to lead the party’s 2016 attempt at the White House, instead opting for the phrase “Republican nominee.”

Trump, who is running unopposed for the nomination after Ted Cruz and John Kasich both dropped out of the race this week, is the party’s presumptive nominee and will likely square off against Democrat Hillary Clinton in the general election.

Cotton said that, while he hopes Trump bears the “responsibility and opportunity to unite the party,” he is willing to support a nominee who can keep Clinton out of the White House.

“I’ve long said that I will support the Republican nominee because we cannot afford a third Obama-Clinton term,” he said.

McCain said a Republican president would avoid the “disaster” of a Clinton administration.

“I believe that four years of Hillary Clinton will be a disaster for this nation as far as national security is concerned,” he said.

Despite pledging their support for the nominee, all three senators made it clear they disagreed with Trump on some level.

“I have strong disagreements with Mr. Trump on a number of issues,” McCain said.

“There’s a number of things that I don’t agree with that Donald Trump has said on the campaign trail – some of his rhetoric, some of his policies, certainly some of his instincts on national security and foreign policy,” Sullivan said.

When asked if his support of Trump as the presumptive nominee was akin to an endorsement, McCain stopped short.

“I’m not clear, I’ll have to get out the dictionary,” he quipped. “I’m telling you: I’ll be supporting the nominee.”

Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake has been on the opposite side of the issue from his fellow state senator.

Flake has said in previous interviews that he would prefer former candidate Kasich over Trump and Cruz and told CNN on Thursday that some of Trump’s positions make it “difficult” for him to support the businessman.

Arizona Election

Arizona Senate Republicans hold a hearing review of the 2020 presidential election results in Maric...
Associated Press

GOP review finds no evidence Arizona election stolen from Trump

A Republican-backed election review in Arizona's largest county has failed to come up with proof to support former President Donald Trump's false claims of a stolen election.
2 days ago
Cyber Ninjas CEO Doug Logan, center, is flanked by Ben Cotton, left, founder of digital security fi...
Danny Shapiro

House Oversight Committee launches investigation into audit role of Cyber Ninjas

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Reform is investigating the role of lead contractor Cyber Ninjas in the audit of Maricopa County election results.
2 days ago
FILE - In this Jan. 7, 2020, file photo, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich speaks at a news co...
Kevin Stone

Arizona AG Mark Brnovich to ‘take all necessary actions’ on election findings

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said Friday he’s prepared to "take all necessary actions" in response to the results of the Arizona Senate’s review of the last year’s election in Maricopa County.
2 days ago
From left, Ben Cotton of CyFIR, Doug Logan of Cyber Ninjas and Senate audit spokesman Randy Pullen ...

Watch: Cyber Ninjas release findings of Arizona election review

Nearly six months after they were hired by Arizona Senate Republicans to dig into the 2020 Maricopa County elections, Cyber Ninjas were set to officially release their findings Friday at 1 p.m. Arizona time.
2 days ago
Clint Hickman, one of four Republicans on the five-member Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, is ...
Danny Shapiro

Maricopa County’s Hickman urges Arizona GOP leaders to push out Kelli Ward

Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman on Friday urged the top Arizona officials in his Republican Party to call for the resignation of state GOP Chairwoman Kelli Ward.
2 days ago
Then-candidate Joe Biden smiles during a December 2019 campaign stop in Iowa. (File Photo by Scott ...
Kevin Stone

Maricopa County supervisor urges GOP colleagues to move on from 2020

Maricopa County Supervisor Bill Gates hopes his fellow Arizona Republicans can move on from 2020 now that election review results are expected to corroborate what he's known since votes were officially tallied in November: Joe Biden won.
2 days ago
Sen. John McCain, two other senators will support Donald Trump as GOP nominee