HELENA – Some of Montana’s top political figures – Democrats and Republicans alike – paid tribute this week to Sen. John McCain, including a governor’s proclamation Monday ordering flags to be flown at half-staff in McCain’s honor.
“His moral courage, his perseverance and his ability to work with all those who wanted to advance the values of the American people will never be forgotten and will continue to guide us through challenging time,” Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock said in his order to have flags flown at half-staff in Montana.
McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee and a longtime U.S. senator from Arizona, died Saturday from brain cancer.
Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester issued a statement late Saturday that said McCain “led by example” and was not afraid to buck either party to do what was right.
“He was a friend of mine in the Senate and it was my honor to serve alongside this true American hero,” Tester said.
Montana’s Republican U.S. senator, Steve Daines, also called McCain an “American hero” and praised his “lifetime of service” to the country.
Republican state Attorney General Tim Fox tweeted a picture of himself and McCain on Sunday, thanked him for his “exemplary public service and dedication” and said few Americans have sacrificed and contributed as much as McCain.
Also, Democratic congressional candidate Kathleen Williams complimented McCain for his “independent thinking and willingness to stand up for what was right,” his military record and his dedication to the country.
McCain was a Navy fighter pilot during the Vietnam War and spent five years as a prisoner of war after being shot down over North Vietnam.