Graham said today that he doesn't think Trump said the right thing in his interview yesterday and then he added this:
“I hope my Democrat colleagues will be equally offended by the fact that this actually did happen in 2016 where a foreign agent was paid for by a political party to gather opposition research. All those things are wrong,” he said, referring to Christopher Steele and the dossier of salacious but unverified allegations against Trump he contributed to that was paid for by Democrats.
“I want to look at all of it. And I want us to come out of the 2016 election with some real bright lines that no party should be hiring foreign agents to look at their opponents. And we shouldn’t be taking meetings,” he said.
Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) said Monday he had told Sen. John McCain to give the FBI the dossier on the Trump campaign’s alleged ties to Russia, a revelation that comes after Trump repeatedly assailed the late Arizona Republican over the issue.
Last week, Trump accused McCain of handing over the document “for very evil purposes.” McCain died of brain cancer in August.
Graham, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told reportersMonday McCain showed him the dossier when he received it in late 2016.
“And I told him the only thing I knew to do with it, it could be a bunch of garbage, it could be true, who knows? Turn it over to somebody whose job it is to find these things out, and John McCain acted appropriately,” Graham said, according to CNN.
Graham said he “was very direct” with Trump on the issue and told the president McCain “deserves better” than Trump’s recent public attacks on him.
The infamous dossier, compiled for Democrats by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, contains a number of unverified claims about Trump’s alleged Russia connections.
Earlier this month, Trump falsely claimed in a tweet that McCain had “sent the Fake Dossier to the FBI and Media hoping to have it printed BEFORE the Election.”
“He & the Dems, working together, failed (as usual). Even the Fake News refused this garbage!” Trump said in the tweet.
McCain was not made aware of the Steele dossier until Nov. 18, 2016 — after Trump had won the election. And while McCain himself gave the dossier to the FBI, there is no evidence he gave it to the media.
Steele gave the information to the FBI as well.
And, by the way, hiring a person from an allied country to do oppo research on an opponent is not the same as being approached by a foreign adversary (through dozens of different avenues) telling you they want to help you get elected by providing secret information about your opponent. This is particularly true when you are secretly doing business deals in said country that require government approval.
Anyone with an ounce of common sense would be concerned about the other nation's motives --- unless that candidate is compromised in some way or is happy to be a traitor to the nation they are seeking to lead if that's what it takes to win.
After watching Trump in action we know he was compromised in at least one way --- he was lying through his teeth about the Trump Tower project all through the campaign. But we don't really know if that was his motive because he's dumber than a pile of dirt and may not even have realized he was compromised --- or cared. It's entirely possible that he wasn't the least bit concerned about being a traitor to the country because in his mind, he IS the country and anything that's good for him is obviously good for all of us.
Graham is tying himself up in knots trying to stay on Trump's good side so he can get re-elected. It's the only thing that matters to him. But he's not alone, is he? It seems that most of the political class is tying itself in knots trying to avoid getting on Trump and his voters' bad sides so they can be re-elected.
Meanwhile, the president of the United States is openly inviting American adversaries to help him get re-elected.
And they wonder why people are so cynical about politics.
Published with permission of Digby's Hullabaloo