US President Trump slammed Senator John McCain for opposing a last-minute plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, insisting that the Republicans would "eventually" roll back his predecessor's signature healthcare law, the media reported.
Trump on Friday night called Arizona Senator's opposition "totally unexpected" and "terrible" during a campaign rally in Huntsville, Alabama, reports The Hill magazine.
"John McCain, if you look at his last campaign, it was all about repeal and replace, repeal and replace," Trump told the crowd.
"So he decided to do something different, and that's fine. We're going to do it eventually," Trump insisted of Obamacare repeal efforts.
Trump broadly chastised congressional Republicans for campaigning for seven years "saying repeal and replace, repeal and replace" and failing to deliver on the promise.
"They didn't care, nobody cared, because they had a President who wasn't going to sign it," Trump said, referring to Republicans votes to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) under his predecessor Barack Obama.
"So it didn't take much courage," he continued. "I think they voted, what 61 times? Sixty-one times to repeal and replace. They finally get a president who will sign the legislation and they don't have the guts to vote for it."
McCain was one of a few Republican senators watched closely ahead of a possible vote next week on the repeal legislation sponsored by Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham, The Hill magazine reported.
He cast a deciding vote in July killing a scaled-down Obamacare repeal bill, joining Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins in voting against the bill.
McCain announced earlier on Friday he would also vote against the latest repeal measure from Graham and Cassidy, which Republicans hoped to vote on next week ahead of a September 30 deadline for approving the bill on a majority vote.
"I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal. I believe we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats, and have not yet really tried," McCain said in a statement.
In his speech, Trump also said that he was provided a list of 10 Republican senators who were "absolute no's" on the Obamacare repeal, saying McCain was not on the list.
"John McCain was not on the list. So that was a totally unexpected thing, terrible. Honestly, terrible."
The President acknowledged that McCain's opposition hurt the Republicans' repeal efforts, but insisted the party would "go back" and press for repeal.
"It's like a boxer... they get knocked down, get up. Knocked down, get up.
"And then the bad ones, they stay in the stool and they say, 'We quit, we quit'. The great ones get up and they end up winning. That's what we're going to do. We might have to go back again and again."