Anti-Trump veterans group to distribute John McCain t-shirts at July 4th celebrations after Trump mocked his war record

Anti-Trump veterans group to distribute John McCain t-shirts at July 4th celebrations after Trump mocked his war record

A veterans group is planning to hand out thousands of John McCain t-shirts at President Donald Trump's Fourth of July military extravaganza.

VoteVets, an Iraq and Afghanistan veterans organization, will be giving away 5,000 t-shirts emblazoned with the destroyer 'USS John McCain' and its nickname 'Big Bad John' ahead of the 'Salute to America' celebrations set to take place at the National Mall in Washington DC, according to NBC Washington.

The organization teamed with Rags of Honor, a clothing company which hires homeless veterans, to create the t-shirts, with proceeds from the sales going to Rags of Honor for the production and printing of the merchandise.

A left-leaning organization, VoteVets admitted they are not big fans of McCain but said they took offense to how Trump repeatedly took aim at his distinguished military service and that they wanted to honor the veteran.


The president had made fun of how McCain was captured by the North Vietnamese when a bombing mission went wrong during the Vietnam war and said he only likes "people who didn't get captured."

Then, last month, White House staff reportedly asked the Navy to hide the USS John McCain, named after McCain, his father, and his grandfather, during Trump's state visit to Japan.

Trump has bigged up the Fourth of July 'Salute to America' celebrations (Source: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)


VoteVets also took aim at Trump's military record, describing him as 'Cadet Bone Spurs' in reference to the medical condition he had offered as an excuse to avoid the Vietnam War Draft.

"While VoteVets and John McCain never much saw eye-to-eye on policy, and probably still would not if he was around today, his family’s service to America spoke to that sense of realizing this nation is bigger than just one man," said John Soltz, chairman of VoteVets. "Honoring that kind of legacy - especially of a political opponent - seemed fitting for July Fourth."


Mark Doyle, the founder of Rags of Honor, similarly paid tribute to McCain. 

"Whether it was Sen. McCain, his father, his grandfather or his sons, the McCain family has given more to this country than most, and America’s birthday seems like a great time to honor that service and sacrifice," he said. "After all, people like them – and there aren’t many – made these kinds of celebrations possible."

Trump's 'Salute to America' will indeed be lavish affair and will feature M1 Abrams tanks — large armored vehicles were seen making their way down Washington DC on Tuesday night ahead of the celebrations — Blue Angels fighter jets, and an Air Force One flyover. 

The city's Regan National Airport will be closed for the flyover and for the "biggest fireworks ever" as well.

In response to reports that military leaders were reluctant to put on such an over-the-top parade, Trump tweeted, "Big 4th of July in D.C. 'Salute to America.' The Pentagon & our great Military Leaders are thrilled to be doing this & showing to the American people, among other things, the strongest and most advanced Military anywhere in the World. Incredible Flyovers & biggest ever Fireworks!"


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 Anti Trump veterans group hand out thousands John McCain t shirts Salute to America celebrations