Lindsey Graham: Everybody F***ing Hates Me

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC)

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC)

Poor Lindsey Graham.

He’s the senior senator from the great state of South Carolina; a Republican who has held his office since 2003.  And yet very few people in his own home state can stand the sight of him.

Democrats hate him because he is a Republican.  Republicans hate him because he is a Democrat with an R behind his name.  He votes against his fellow Republicans 69% of the time.

One might ask, “How the hell does somebody like Lindsey Graham get elected in South Carolina?”  Well, it’s complicated.

You see, the last primary election in South Carolina featured six contenders for his Senate seat who filed as Republicans.  Five of them actually were conservative Republicans.  The sixth was Lindsey Graham.  Now, the Democrats knew they had no chance of winning the Senate seat in a conservative stronghold like South Carolina.  Fortunately for them, South Carolina has “open primaries”, where anybody from any party can vote in whatever primary they wish.  And the Democrats wished to elect Graham, knowing he will vote their way in the Senate most of the time.  They got him through the primary, and the general election went predictably easy for the guy in the “R” column.

At a time when Americans are dancing in the streets over the Trump-induced death of the liberal left, Lindsey doesn’t even pretend to be conservative.  He’s for big bailouts.  He busts his butt to preserve the corrupt corporate-crony Import/Export Bank program.  He leads the fight for amnesty.  After President Obama encouraged illegal immigrants to get out and vote, Lindsey excoriated President-elect Trump for even suggesting that vote fraud is possible.

Graham routinely supported even the most liberal nominees.  He scoffed at the Tea Party.  To everyone’s astonishment, he ran for President, but never advanced from the kids’ table in the debates, dropping out before spending any of his campaign funds.

There was a time when the Senator had one thing in common with Republicans – his support for a strong military and a generally hawkish outlook on foreign affairs.  But even that is no longer completely in step with recent conservative sentiments.  Strong military, yes.  Protracted and expensive engagement in foreign entanglements without an end game or any obvious American interests served, not so much.

Washington, DC can be a lonely place sometimes.  And Lindsey Graham may be the most hated man in town.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

In a trap, trip I can’t grip
Never thought I’d be the one who’d slip
Then I started to realize
I was living one big lie,
She f***ing hates me

She Hates Me – Puddle of Mudd

Same – Same – Same – DIFFERENT (Lindsey Graham)

same vs different Flashback to Kindergarten.  One of the the first things we had to learn was how to decide which things are the same and which are different.  It builds the foundation for organizing our knowledge.

At first blush, South Carolina politics is pretty straightforward.  Governor: Nikki Haley, Republican.  Senators: Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, Republicans.  Representatives: Sanford, Wilson, Duncan, Gowdy, Mulvaney, Rice – all Republicans.  Jim Clyburn, Democrat.

Here is your political kindergarten worksheet for this morning:  Which of these South Carolina politicians is different?

Obviously, lone Democrat Jim Clyburn is sitting by himself at the South Carolina lunch table.  But many South Carolina conservatives argue that another one of their elected officials is different.

This week the Charleston Republicans executive committee voted to censure Senator Lindsey Graham – again – for being too liberal, just ahead of the upcoming June 10 South Carolina primary.  Four years ago he was unanimously censured by the same group.

Graham’s supporters point to his steadfast pursuit of Benghazi-Gate justice and his opposition to abortion.  His critics claim he and his good friend John McCain are big-government “insiders” who too often appease the ruling Democrats instead of standing firm on conservative principles.

Those who seek to unseat Graham face an uphill battle.  Six primary challengers are lined up against him, all solidly positioned to his right.  Lee Bright appears to lead the pack currently, but the key to the election is whether the rivals can, as a group, win 51% of the votes and force a runoff election.  If not, Graham will cruise to victory and a certain return to his DC post.

Graham will not debate his opponents until a few days before the election, and will likely not spend much of his reportedly huge political war chest, evidence of (according to critics) his insider connections.

There is one factor that may be Graham’s undoing: backlash to his imperious penchant for poking Tea Party conservatives in the eye:

“Everything I’m doing now in terms of talking about climate, talking about immigration, talking about Gitmo is completely opposite of where the Tea Party movement’s at,” Graham said.   On four occasions, Graham met with Tea Party groups. The first, in his Senate office, was “very, very contentious.”

“The problem with the Tea Party, I think it’s just unsustainable because they can never come up with a coherent vision for governing the country. It will die out.”

– quoted from NY Times interview

Conservatives can’t help but compare Graham to their governor, their other senator, and their Republican congressmen, all supporters of the Tea Party principles:  constitutionally limited government, free market economics, and fiscal responsibility.  If Lindsey Graham lines up on the opposite side of these convictions, I would have to mark him on my worksheet as DIFFERENT.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

 

You see ’em drop like flies from the bright sunny skies
They come knocking at your door with this look in their eyes
You’ve got one good trick and you’re hanging on
You’re not the same!

Not the Same – Ben Folds