Entrenched U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) may be in for the fight of his life in his 2016 re-election bid, as he uses the term “crazies” to describe the approximately 15,000 border security-advocating Arizonans who showed up for Donald Trump’s July appearance in Phoenix.
Breitbart News spoke exclusively with Maricopa County Republican Party (MCRP) Chair Tyler Bowyer regarding McCain’s comments and the makeup of the crowd for the Phoenix event.
McCain’s “crazies” comment came in an interview with a New Yorker reporter in which the Senator said, “This performance with our friend (Trump) out in Phoenix is very hurtful to me.” He continued, “Because what he did was he fired up the crazies.” He later tried to pass the comment off as a “term of endearment.”
Bowyer told Breitbart News, “Anyone that likes to go after voters has a fundamental problem with the way that they think. We have some great people, salt of the earth.” He continued, “Whether it’s Senator McCain or Donald Trump or whoever, those in the grassroots and beyond the grassroots are really interested in topics and issues.”
Trump traveled to Phoenix after meeting with family members of Americans killed by illegal aliens in Los Angeles, California, and after speaking with Freedom Fest attendees in Las Vegas, Nevada. He has been heralding the egregious problem of sanctuary city policies, lax immigration law enforcement, and lacking border security. He has since surged to the top of the polls among 2016 GOP candidates.
McCain, on the other hand, was formally censured in January of 2014 for abandoning the GOP base by “drafting, co-sponsoring and voting for legislation best associated with liberal Democrats, such as Amnesty, funding for ObamaCare, the debt ceiling, assaults on the Constitution and 2nd amendment, and has continued to support liberal nominees.” Maricopa County Republicans overwhelmingly voted 1150-351 for censure. Apache County and Mohave County had also censured McCain. Bowyer was voted in as chairman one year after the MCRP censure.
In McCain’s last primary fight against J.D. Hayworth in 2010, McCain ran a strong “build the danged fence” border security ad. Arizonans have not forgotten that declaration and the lack of follow through that came after the election was over. Many supporters of McCain’s primary challenger and State Senator Kelli Ward refer back to those failed McCain campaign promises.
Bowyer also remarked on Obama’s failed catch and release polices along with effective amnesty programs DAPA and DACA. He went on to mention positive legislation such as Kate’s Law, aimed at deterring illegal immigration. That bill met support in the U.S. House of Representatives that was not as strong in the Senate. Bowyer noted that people want to see the two sides work together on such positive legislation.
Bowyer said the people of Arizona are “interested in issues, not just personalities, but issues.” In Arizona, border security and immigration enforcement are among those important issues.
At the official launch event for State Sen. Kelli Ward’s campaign for McCain’s U.S. Senate seat, attendees over and again expressed appreciation for McCain’s military service but that he’s been in Washington too long and it’s time for him to go.
Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana.