Donald Trump is definitely rubbing off on Senator Lindsey Graham. Over the last several months, America has seen an entirely different (disappointing) side to the South Carolina Senator as he somehow went from being one of the president’s most outspoken critics to one of his most crazed defenders. Now, it seems as though Graham is taking on some of the president’s characteristics when it comes to speaking with the press.
Graham went on national television earlier this morning for an interview with Fox News’ Chris Wallace, and the interview was so awkward that Wallace had to point it out at the end. During the interview, Wallace asked Graham about how it might be to replace liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with a conservative judge. Wallace wondered how the GOP was going to stop future Supreme Court nominations from becoming the “political circus” that Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s hearing turned out to be. Graham was nothing but vicious in his response:
Here’s what will happen if there’s a vacancy — there will be a lot of pushback from the left. But my Democrat colleagues felt, when they were in charge, we should confirm judges by a majority vote. They changed the rules to accommodate President Obama, they tried to stack the court, they never thought [Hillary Clinton] would lose.
I will urge the president to nominate a qualified conservative. Hopefully that person will get through and I expect it to be along party lines. And this is what happens when you change the rules. This is come back to bite ’em, I predicted it would and we’ll see.
I’m going to be hellbent to replace [with] a conservative whoever steps down for whatever reason.”
Wallace then pointed out that having a conservative justice taking Ginsburg’s place would “make the Kavanaugh hearings look like a tea party.” Let’s just say that Graham didn’t like that. He fired back:
They should have thought of that before they changed the rules. They tried to destroy conservative judges, I voted for [Sonia Sotomayor] and [Elena Kagan] understanding what I was getting. I am dead set on making sure it’s a conservative nominee. Elections have consequences. The rules of the Senate were changed, not by me! By them! And [Republicans] had to [change the rules] on the Supreme Court because they would not give us anybody and Kavanaugh was a fine man. They tried to destroy him.”
Wallace then tried to end the interview, but Graham demanded to get one more word in. Notably furious, Graham said:
We don’t need one Democrat to replace a liberal justice and the reason that’s the case is because what [former Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid did.”
Graham was so defensive because he wanted to insist that Democrats were responsible for the rule change that led to a simple majority having the ability to confirm a SCOTUS nominee. That’s not the case, though. The so-called “nuclear option” that Harry Reid used during the Obama era applied only to federal judges and Cabinet appointees. It was the GOP who changed the rules for Supreme Court nominees — when they wanted to confirm Trump’s pick, Neil Gorsuch.
Wallace tied up the interview and said, “Always good to speak with you, sir” and was greeted by an extremely awkward pause. Graham, looking p*ssed as hell, refused to thank Wallace, ripped off his mic and exited the interview without saying a word. A stunned Wallace could only giggle in disbelief and say, “I guess you think it was okay to speak with us.”
You can watch Graham throw a Trump-like temper tantrum below:
Featured image via screen capture