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McCain Honored At Memorial Service In Washington


Daughter, Former Presidents Rebuke Trump At McCain’s Funeral
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WATCH: Daughter, Former Presidents Rebuke Trump At McCain’s Funeral

Three former presidents, members of Congress, current and former world leaders as well as family and friends gathered on September 1 for a memorial service for longtime U.S. Senator John McCain at the Washington National Cathedral.

His daughter, Meghan McCain, opened the ceremony with a tearful and impassioned tribute that turned into a clear rebuke of President Donald Trump's politics.​

Trump, who often feuded with McCain, was not invited to the ceremony. He traveled instead to his Virginia golf course, arriving as the service was taking place.

Daughter Meghan McCain did not mention Trump directly but referred to his campaign slogan of "Make America Great Again."​

"The America of John McCain has no need to be made great again because America was always great," she said.

McCain said her father was a "great man" and she encouraged others to live up to his example.

"We gather here to mourn the passing of American greatness -- the real thing, not cheap rhetoric from men who will never come near the sacrifice he gave so willingly, nor the opportunistic appropriation of those who lived lives of comfort and privilege while he suffered and served," she said.

Among those in the front row at the cathedral were Barack and Michelle Obama, George and Laura Bush, Bill and Hillary Clinton, as well as former Vice Presidents Dick Cheney and Al Gore.

Also among mourners in Washington this week was the senator's 106-year-old mother, Roberta McCain.

Obama, a Democrat, and Bush, a Republican, were among those who had been asked by McCain before his death to speak about the six-term senator during the service.

Obama, who beat McCain in the 2008 U.S. presidential election, hailed the one-time prisoner of war for his commitment to truth and core democratic values.

"So much of our politics, our public life, our public discourse can seem small and mean and petty, trafficking in bombast and insult, and phony controversies, and manufactured outrage," Obama said.

Bush, in his eulogy, described McCain as a man with a code.

"He loved freedom with the passion of a man who knew its absence. He respected the dignity inherent in every life, a dignity that does not stop at borders and cannot be erased by dictators," Bush said.

It is the last public event in Washington, where McCain lived and worked for over four decades, and part of McCain's five-day, cross-country funeral procession. He died from brain cancer on August 25 aged 81.

A private burial service will be held on September 2 in Annapolis, Maryland, at the U.S. Naval Academy.

With reporting by AP and Reuters