In a speech on the Senate floor Tuesday, Arizona Sen. John McCain announced he will continue to serve in the Senate despite his recent brain cancer diagnosis.
McCain was hospitalized several weeks ago so that he could undergo surgery to remove a blood clot above his left eye. Further tests revealed that he has glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer.
McCain managed to return to the Senate on Tuesday to cast a key vote to advance the health care debate while sporting a gnarly scar from the surgery above his left eye. After the vote, he was given the floor and urged all of his colleagues to work together to come to a bipartisan solution on health care.
He also chided the Senate for failing to get much done in 2017, with the exception of confirming conservative Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch.
“What have we to lose by trying to work together to find those solutions?” McCain said of recent stalls on health care reform. “I’ve seen it happen many times…those are the proudest moments of my career.”
McCain praised the United States and its democratic institutions and called upon his colleagues to follow the lead of their former senators.
“I’ve known and admired men and women in the senate who played much more than a small role in our history, true statesmen, giants of American politics that come from both parties and from various backgrounds,” he said. “Their ambitions were frequently in conflict.”
“But they knew that however sharp and heartfelt their disputes, however keen their ambitions, they had an obligation to work collaboratively to ensure the Senate discharged its constitutional responsibilities effectively,” he concluded.
“It is a privilege to serve with all of you. I mean it,” McCain finished. “It is an honor to serve the American people in your company.”
McCain will work in the Senate for several days before returning home to further recover from his bran surgery.