President Donald Trump on Wednesday night denied being involved with a directive that reportedly called for a warship named after the late Sen. John McCain to be moved "out of sight" during his trip to Japan over Memorial Day weekend.
"I was not informed about anything having to do with the Navy Ship USS John S. McCain during my recent visit to Japan," Trump tweeted. "Nevertheless, @FLOTUS and I loved being with our great Military Men and Women - what a spectacular job they do!"
McCain, hailed as a war hero after being held captive for roughly five years during the Vietnam War, has repeatedly drawn the ire of the president. Trump has repeatedly bashed McCain for voting against the GOP effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
Trump's comments come after the White House reportedly requested that the USS John S. McCain, a warship named after the Arizona Republican and after his father and grandfather who were both admirals in the Navy, be "out of sight" during Trump's visit to Japan, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The Navy appeared to refute the WSJ's report in a tweet on Wednesday night: "The name of USS John S. McCain was not obscured during the POTUS visit to Yokosuka on Memorial Day. The Navy is proud of that ship, its crew, its namesake and its heritage."
In addition to honoring the late senator, the warship is also the namesake of the senator's father, Adm. John S. McCain, Jr., a former U.S. Pacific Command commander, and his grandfather, Adm. John S. McCain, who was a distinguished World War II carrier task force commander.
An email from a U.S. Indo-Pacific Command official to U.S. Navy and Air Force officials noted that the directive that the USS John S. McCain must not be visible was a result of conversations between the White House Military Office and the Seventh Fleet of the U.S. Navy, according to the Journal.
The ship has been undergoing repairs after a 2017 collision, and would have been difficult to move. Instead, a tarp was hung over the ship's name ahead of Trump's visit, the Journal reported. A barge was moved in front of the ship to obscure the name after the tarp was removed. In addition, sailors, who often where caps with the ship's name were given the day off, according to the Journal.
Meghan McCain on Wednesday evening blasted Trump for the reported directive.
McCain, a host on ABC's "The View" and daughter of the late senator, has recently slammed 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar for recounting how Sen. McCain had named dictators to her during Trump's inauguration. Responding to Klobuchar's remarks,Meghan McCain asked that her father be left out of presidential politics.
"Trump is a child who will always be deeply threatened by the greatness of my dads incredible life," she tweeted Wednesday evening reacting to the WSJ report prior to Trump's tweet disavowing any involvement on his part in the reported directive about the ship. "There is a lot of criticism of how much I speak about my dad, but nine months since he passed, Trump won't let him RIP. So I have to stand up for him."
"It makes my grief unbearable," she added.