John McCain was first elected to represent the state of Arizona in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1982. As a long time admirer of Ronald Reagan, McCain was an early foot soldier in the Reagan Revolution.
He served two terms in the House before being elected to the Senate in 1985. He was re-elected to a third Senate term in November 1998.
Senator McCain is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, and has tackled telecommunications and aviation issues.
McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936. After graduating from the United States Naval Academy in 1958, McCain began a twenty-two year career as a naval aviator. In 1967, he was shot down over Vietnam and held as a prisoner-of-war in Hanoi for five and a half years (1967-1973), much of it in solitary confinement. He retired from the Navy as a Captain in 1981. McCain's naval honors include the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.
Senator McCain has seven children and four grandchildren. He and his wife, Cindy, reside in Phoenix