John McCain introduced Rep. Adam Schiff as ‘a good guy, for a communist’ at a dinner with Bill Gates and Bono

John McCain.

John McCain jokingly teased Rep. Adam Schiff when introducing him to Bill Gates and Bono.
McCain called Schiff “a pretty good guy for a communist,” Schiff recounts in his new memoir.
The late Arizona Senator was known for ribbing his colleagues.

The late Sen. John McCain jokingly introduced Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff as “a pretty good guy for a communist” to Bill Gates and Bono at a dinner at the 2017 Munich Security Conference, Schiff writes in his new memoir “Midnight in Washington.”

Schiff, the top Democrat on the powerful House Select Committee on Intelligence, wrote that the atmosphere at the conference, which convenes leaders from around the world, was tense and the anxiety over the then-new Trump presidency “palpable.”

“In sharp contrast,” he wrote, “McCain’s reception was effusive and emotional.”

“Joining McCain in meetings with Afghan president Ashraf Ghani and other world leaders, I could see the immense respect they had for him, and how much they pinned their hopes on his ability to guide or constrain Trump’s worst impulses,” Schiff wrote, adding that Ghani “and others were desperate for McCain’s help, any help, in dealing with the erratic new American president.”

Schiff also wrote that “one of the wonderful things about traveling with John McCain was that he could invite anyone he wanted to dinner, and they would usually come.” On that trip, Schiff found himself dining with two unlikely companions: Gates and Bono.

The longtime former Republican Senator from Arizona was known, among other things, for his sense of humour and for poking fun at reporters and colleagues on both sides of the aisle. And that dinner, he didn’t spare Schiff.

“In a private room, seated at a long wooden table with plenty of beer, wine, and heavy German food, McCain introduced me to his guests as ‘a good guy, for a Communist,'” Schiff wrote. “It wasn’t the first time he had introduced me in this fashion; when I’d joined McCain on CBS’s Face the Nation, he had introduced me to host Bob Schieffer as ‘a good guy who gets things right about zero percent of the time.'”

Schiff wrote that he “was flattered that he teased me this way; his staff told me that it’s when he doesn’t pick on you that you need to worry,” adding, “that night in Munich, he introduced his closest friend, Lindsey Graham, by saying: “‘Everyone knows Lindsey; few people like him.'”

At the dinner, Schiff said, the four of them discussed Gates’ and Bono’s philanthropic and public health advocacy efforts in Africa, with McCain “careful in his comments about Trump” and “not wanting to criticize our president while on foreign soil.”

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