Lindsey Graham's Brett Kavanaugh Defense on Fox News Goes Off the Rails - Rolling Stone
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Lindsey Graham … Why?

Brett Kavanaugh’s most ardent defender has logged on

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks as Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol HillSenate Judiciary Committee Brett Kavanaugh nomination hearing, Washington DC, USA - 27 Sep 2018Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks as Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol HillSenate Judiciary Committee Brett Kavanaugh nomination hearing, Washington DC, USA - 27 Sep 2018

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks as Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill.

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As America continues to vet the sexual assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh, we are handed competing narratives. One thing, however, is clear: Lindsey Graham has jumped the shark. On Monday night, the senator from South Carolina sat down with Sean Hannity to discuss his feverish obsession with forcing Kavanaugh onto the Supreme Court, sexual allegations be damned. So laser-focused is Graham that he thinks President Trump should re-nominate Kavanaugh for the position should the Senate vote against him after the FBI concludes its investigation at the end of this week.

“I would appeal the verdict of the Senate to the ballot box,” Graham said. “This good man should not be destroyed. If you legitimize this process by one vote short, woe be unto the next person. I’d hate to be the next person nominated. I would feel horrible that we destroyed Kavanaugh. I’d renominate him and I’d take this case to the American people. I’d ask voters in Indiana and Missouri and North Dakota and other places where Trump won, saying who he would nominate if he got to be president, and see if the voters would want to appeal the verdict of their senator.”

Hannity seemed confused, and rightfully so. Kavanaugh failing to survive a confirmation vote would be a debilitating blow to the Republican party. Responding by doubling down on the alleged sexual abuser and serial liar would be suicidal. Polls have shown that Kavanaugh isn’t regarded as highly by the general population as he is by Republican senators, and attempting to give constituents the ability to overrule their senator’s vote this November would be radical high-wire act that would almost certainly backfire. It also wouldn’t make much sense considering Trump could simply nominate another staunch conservative who would likely be confirmed with relative ease.

That wasn’t all. Graham also veered into “enemy of the people” territory by pointing a finger at NBC, whom he accused of working with the Democrats to derail Kavanaugh’s nomination. “They’ve been a co-conspirator in the destruction of Kavanaugh from my point of view,” he said, going on to suggest they wouldn’t report on sexual assault allegations if they were made against a Democrat. Graham’s comments bring to mind Trump’s repeated attacks on the free press, particularly NBC, which last month he described as “worse than even CNN.” On Saturday, the president criticized the network’s coverage of how the White House has handled the FBI’s investigation of the claims against Kavanaugh. Though Graham publicly pushed back against Trump’s attacks on the press as recently as August, he’s now taken the baton from the president. He’s also channeling Trump on social media.

As Graham continues to fume over the Kavanaugh nomination, his hypocrisy has come into sharp relief. While serving in the House of Representatives in 1999, for example, he didn’t take the prospect of perjury lightly as he seems to be doing today. “I have argued to you that when you found that a judge was a perjurer, you couldn’t in good conscience send him back in a courtroom because everybody that came in that courtroom thereafter would have a real serious doubt,” Graham said while appealing to the Senate on the issue of Bill Clinton’s impeachment, which has just passed through the House.

There now exists a trove of convincing evidence that Kavanaugh has lied under oath about a number of topics. Countless former classmates have come forward to dispute his characterization of his drinking habits; his explanations of notations made in his high school yearbook are almost laughably implausible; and, as NBC reported Monday, text messages suggest he was aware of Debroah Ramirez’s allegation prior to its publication in the New Yorker. Kavanaugh told Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) under oath that the first he heard of the allegation was when the story was published late last month.

As for the burning hot core of Graham’s rage, the Democrats’ “pathetic” attempt to keep the seat open, there’s a video for that, too.

Graham has never displayed interest in discovering the facts regarding the allegations against Kavanaugh. After Christine Blasey Ford came forward, he callously managed that he’d “listen to the lady” while preaching a need to confirm Kavanaugh “ASAP.” He had a meltdown in front of the press after she testified, following it up during Kavanaugh’s testimony with a rage-filled diatribe about how sad it is that the Democrats are trying to keep such a “warm” and “friendly” alleged sexual abuser off the nation’s highest court. He even suggested that should Democrats gain control of the Senate, he would work in bad faith to obstruct the confirmation of anyone they might try to install on the Supreme Court.

Graham was fiercely critical of Trump during the 2016 campaign and, until recently, only a nominal supporter of his presidency (with some exceptions). In recent months, however, he’s been one of the most outspoken defenders of Trump’s most dangerous impulses, including his desire to fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions. This now includes Trump’s drive to confirm Kavanaugh; or, perhaps more accurately, his obsession with averting anything that could be construed as weakness. Whatever it is, Graham is not only on board, he’s driving the train. What are his true motivations? It’s hard to say. World peace, perhaps.

Deal with it, America.


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