Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) returned to the Senate shortly before 3 p.m. on Tuesday, less than a week after he announced that he had been diagnosed with glioblastoma, an extremely aggressive form of brain cancer. McCain came to vote on the motion to proceed on the health care bill, and he voted "aye."
Upon McCain's arrival to the Senate chamber, his fellow senators stood in unison and gave him a standing ovation. McCain received hugs and handshakes from several of his Senate colleagues, including Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY).
Standing O for McCain.— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) July 25, 2017
After McCain voted, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) cast the final vote to tie the vote at 50. Vice President Mike Pence broke the tie. Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Susan Collins (R-ME) voted "no," creating the tie.
Following the tiebreak, McCain--who still has bandages from his craniotomy procedure--delivered a floor speech. For this, he was called a "certified badass" and "truly amazing."
I don't know how I expected @SenJohnMcCain to look today, but wow. Certified badass speaking on the Senate floor right now.— Jessica Seale (@jessicanseale) July 25, 2017
Only @SenJohnMcCain could entertain the Senate floor with his jokes after being diagnosed with brain cancer. He is truly amazing.— Abby Huntsman (@HuntsmanAbby) July 25, 2017
In his speech, McCain spoke about the Senate's history, and issued a call for bipartisanship and cooperation. He said that the bill must be amended, and that he would not vote on it as-is. He told his fellow senators to avoid listening to pundits--"to hell with them!"
In true McCain form, he closed with a joke--saying that he intends on returning to the Senate and making people regret nice things that they have said about him when he was newly-diagnosed.
McCain: "I have every intention of returning here and giving many of you cause to regret all the nice things you said about me" pic.twitter.com/0PcShSY6GG— POLITICO (@politico) July 25, 2017
President Trump thanked McCain for his vote and congratulated Senate Republicans.
.@SenJohnMcCain-Thank you for coming to D.C. for such a vital vote. Congrats to all Rep. We can now deliver grt healthcare to all Americans!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017
Welcome back, Sen. McCain.
This post has been updated.