Skip to comments.Graham's Clear Path (National Review schilling for Grahamnesty)
Posted on 02/12/2013 10:18:08 AM PST by cotton1706
Lindsey Graham was supposed to be the Dick Lugar of the 2014 cycle. Instead, he may be the Orrin Hatch. Even tea partiers in South Carolina admit he probably has a smooth path to the nomination and then to reelection.
Graham has consistently irked conservatives. He voted to confirm Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor. He supports the DREAM Act and was one of the chief architects of the 2007 immigration legislation that was widely derided by conservatives as an amnesty. The Club for Growth which helped topple Indianas Lugar and Utahs Bob Bennett announced last fall that Graham would be a top target for the group.
Yet South Carolina tea partiers admit that chances are good Graham will face no serious opponent. Lindsey Grahams got an easy path to reelection, glumly admits Colin Lindell, founder of the Palmetto States Aiken County Tea Party. People would love to see someone challenge him, but the problem is there is no real serious contender who can gather the support.
Theres nobody viable to go up against him, agrees Allan Olson who founded the Columbia Tea Party. (He is no longer an active member, but he remains a tea partier.) Hes got too much of a war chest, Olson adds. Indeed, Graham has already collected approximately $4.5 million.
Grahams war chest is one reason state tea partiers are dubious about the chances that state senator Lee Bright who is reportedly considering running can mount a successful candidacy. He would absolutely vote correctly, says Spartanburg Tea Party organizer Karen Martin, but Im just not sure that he has the fundraising capability. Martin, for her part, is holding out hope that a Graham alternative perhaps someone from the private sector will emerge in upcoming months.
Another fact in Grahams favor: None of the Republican House members in the state appear interested in following in Tim Scotts footsteps and switching to the Senate. Conservative stars Mick Mulvaney and Joe Wilson have both ruled out running against Graham. House Republicans Trey Gowdy and Jeff Duncan have not hinted at challenging Graham. According to Republican insiders, Graham has made a point of developing relationships with the GOP members of the South Carolina delegation. Hes also attended several tea-party-related meetings on Capitol Hill.
But while Grahams outreach may have swayed some, South Carolina tea partiers arent convinced. It was just absolute pandering, Martin remarks of Grahams outreach to the tea party. Hes attended a couple of meetings here and there, and tried to explain how valuable he is to the state of South Carolina with his seniority and with his seats on the Judiciary and Armed Services committees. But then when questioned on his votes for Sotomayor and Kagan or his reach across the aisle or all his stances on amnesty, he just really doesnt give very good answers.
For now, without a candidate and up against Grahams war chest and name ID he polled eleven points ahead of a generic more conservative Republican in a December Public Policy Polling survey tea partiers have little reason to be optimistic about overthrowing Graham in next years primary.
Its a disappointment for a lot of conservatives, says Lindell, noting that plenty of South Carolinians support Graham on national-security issues but wish he had different positions on domestic matters. Wed much rather have someone who is the total package.
Graham should be defeated. Hopefully, Jim DeMint (who knows the state) will recruit somebody to challenge him.
Shilling or Schilling, I don’t see this column at NR as either.
I see this as a column to get the message out there: “hey guys, there’s no way you can defeat Graham so don’t even try. Don’t give him a hard time. Let him run unopposed. Don’t hold him accountable for his votes. It’s not worth it, and you may weaken in in the general election.”
This message is boilerplate and predictable and I keep my eye out for it. It’s February of 2013. Before long, I expect to see a similar story regarding Susan Collins and perhaps Lamar Alexander. They’re also trying to protect Mitch McConnell.
Graham and his liberal votes must be protected at all cost. I want him gone.
I’ve noticed in recent months in Sen. Graham has been taking positions much closer to my own. Maybe it’s because he’s up for re-election next year. Anyhoo....there is an old adage in politics....When someone is flipping in your direction, don’t complain about it.
Why, lookie here. I do a search on Susan Collins and what do I find??
I’m not sure why you wish to send me to a blog at Politico.
Graham is a squish. And NR has become more squishy, at times. But this column, as evidence it is “schilling” for him? No.
Doesn’t matter. I posted that story too.
They also have a fairly successful track record. If they oppose Graham, then there is hope for him being gone.
Graham is McCain with a drawl
Is NR irresponsible or liberal to point that out?
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