Donald Trump’s brash rhetoric reached new heights yesterday when he took at shot at John McCain’s status as a prisoner of war — a move analysts say could alienate key supporters and threatens to derail the business magnate’s campaign.
The Republican presidential candidate slammed McCain’s military record at a conservative forum yesterday, saying he was a “war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured.”
His remarks drew boos from the audience.
Earlier this week, McCain criticized Trump for his controversial remarks on immigration, saying they had “fired up the crazies” at a rally in Phoenix.
Earlier in the week, Trump called McCain “a dummy” who graduated at the bottom of his U.S. Naval Academy class.
He then took the jibe to another level.
McCain, whose experience in the Vietnam War was a linchpin of his 2008 presidential bid, was held for more than five years after his plane was shot down.
Trump’s comments were particularly careless in the wake of the Chattanooga shooting Thursday that killed five service members, said GOP national pundit Ford O’Connell.
“Trump doesn’t like to apologize, but he’s probably going to have to walk back some of those comments,” said O’Connell, who is a former McCain adviser. “This is one of those things where you only get so many of them before you’re kaput as a candidate.”