Washington (CNN)Meghan McCain responded Friday to a White House staffer who joked about her father’s brain cancer, saying her family was doing well but asking how the Trump administration could retain an employee who made such a remark.
On Thursday, Kelly Sadler, a special assistant who handles surrogate communications, told other staffers that McCain’s opposition to President Donald Trump’s CIA director nominee Gina Haspel does not matter because “he’s dying anyway,” a White House official told CNN.
Meghan McCain responded to Sadler’s comment at the top of Friday’s show.
“Kelly, here’s a little news flash … We’re all dying. I’m dying, you’re dying, we’re all dying. And I want to say since my dad has been diagnosed … I really feel like I understand the meaning of life, and it is not how you die, it’s how you live,” she said.
She added, “Don’t feel bad for me or my family. We’re really strong.”
Neither the White House nor the President has denied or condemned Sadler’s comment. Sadler called Meghan McCain on Thursday to apologize for the remark, a source close to the situation told CNN, although it’s unclear what her response was.
A White House official told CNN Thursday, “We respect Senator McCain’s service to our nation, and he and his family are in our prayers during this difficult time.”
Sadler’s remarks also came on the same day that retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney attempted to defend the use of torture by saying it “worked on” McCain when he was a prisoner of war in Vietnam.
“That’s why they call him ‘Songbird John,'” McInerney said on Fox Business Network.
McCain on Friday called it a “real ugly nickname.”
“My father’s legacy is going to be talked about hundreds and hundreds of years. These people: Nothingburgers. Nobody is going to remember you,” McCain said.
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