McCain pointed out that waterboarding, an interrogation technique that is outlawed under the Geneva Conventions, was among the forms of torture that the Senate voted 93-3 to outlaw last summer.
Trump enthusiastically voiced support for torturing terrorist suspects during Saturday’s Republican debate, saying he would “bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding” if elected President. He repeated the claim on Monday, saying waterboarding works “in terms of information and other things.”
According to McCain, the information gathered by subjecting suspects to simulated drowning is often flat-out inaccurate.
“They got a whole lot of information that was totally false,” the Arizona senator said of the use of waterboarding during George W. Bush’s administration.
“Do we want to resort to doing things that our enemies do? Do we want to be on the same plane as those people chopping off heads?” he continued.
McCain, who was a prisoner of war in Vietnam, is one of the Senate’s most vocal opponents of torture. During the 2008 and 2012 presidential contests, he criticized his Republican colleagues for supporting waterboarding and other forms of torture.