President Trump Criticizes Arizona Sens. McCain, Flake At Phoenix Rally

Published: Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - 12:22am
Updated: Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - 1:10am
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Mariana Dale/KJZZ
President Donald Trump speaks to a crowd at the Phoenix Convention Center on Aug. 22, 2017.

T-shirts, hats and signs with the words “Make America Great Again” dominated the crowd of supporters at President Donald Trump’s rally in Phoenix on Tuesday night. There were two notable Arizona leaders who were not in the crowd.

President Trump did not mention Sens. Jeff Flake and John McCain by name, but his speech made it clear he was unhappy with the pair. He lamented the failed Senate health care repeal proposal. 

“One vote away. I will not mention any names,” he said.

McCain joined two other Republican senators and all Democrats in rejecting the health care repeal. Trump also took a shot at Arizona’s junior senator, Jeff Flake.

“And nobody wants me to talk about your other senator, who’s weak on borders and weak on crime, so I won’t talk about him," Trump said.

Trump did not indicate support for any specific opponent of Flake in the 2018 race for his Arizona Senate seat.

Trump applauded three of Arizona's Republican representatives — Paul Gosar, Trent Franks and Andy Biggs — and also complimented Arizona's governor.

"You have a hell of a governor, Gov. Ducey," Trump said.

The rest of Trump's speech was largely composed of his greatest campaign hits. He reiterated his plan to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico and bring back American jobs.

An audience of thousands cheered and, when prompted, booed.

Mille Kasischke, like many in the crowd, wore a "Make America Great Again" ballcap. 

“I just think Donald Trump is one fantastic person to be a multimillionaire and dedicate his life for the next four years to make America greater," said Kasischke.

The Sun City resident said she most hopes for the Affordable Care Act to be repealed, another promise Trump says he intends to keep.

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