Dear Senator Lindsey Graham – although I’ve rarely agreed with you on political or ideological issues, I’ve always respected you for two reasons. First, you’ve never been an extremist, and you’ve never had any tolerance for extremism within your own party. Second, you’ve always been a straight shooter. In fact I thought your 2016 campaign for President, where you kept things relatively moderate at a time when you knew your party was hungry for extremism, was almost heroic. The trouble is, we both know you’re acting like an entirely different person now – and you know damn well why.
People change their tune about things. Worldviews evolve. It happens. But in your case, one day this year you decided that you were no longer going to be the Republican Party’s chief Trump watchdog, and you were instead going to immediately transform into Donald Trump’s chief lapdog. In fact it happened while you were playing a round of golf with Trump. It’s been such an instant and cartoonish one-eighty, the prevailing public narrative about you is a debate about whether Trump is blackmailing you or bribing you.
Lindsey, I know you’re not going to tell us which one it is. But either Trump offered you something so irresistible that day, you couldn’t refuse it, or he used that round of golf inform you that he has something hanging over you. Either way, you’ve decided that it’s worth throwing away every ounce of your credibility and integrity. People don’t reach the age of sixty-three and then suddenly become a different person overnight. Whatever Trump is offering you or holding over you, it must be something that’s more important to you than everything else in your life combined.
That’s why you have to go home now, Lindsey. If you’re behaving this way because Donald Trump offered you the Attorney General job, then you’ve utterly failed yourself, and you no longer deserve to hold public office. If this is because Trump is blackmailing you – and you’ve admitted to CNN that hackers got into your email while you were running for President – then you need to go home as well.
If you’re being blackmailed into throwing it all away, Senator Graham, then I feel terrible for you. You don’t deserve that fate. But you’re now actively propping up a mentally unstable career criminal who literally committed treason while rigging the election in his favor. You don’t get to be Senator anymore. Just resign now, go home, lay low, wait until Trump is carted off to prison, and then return to public life. Otherwise, if you keep doing this criminal’s bidding, you just might end up in prison with him – and even though I don’t agree with most of your politics, that’s not an outcome I want to see for you. Just go home, Lindsey. It’s over.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report