President Obama has asked Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham and John McCain to head to Egypt next week and reinforce the message that the U.S. would like to see a democratically elected government installed there soon.
The Obama administration wants Egyptian military leaders to hear from Republican members of Congress, rather than members of the executive branch, “so we can make it real to them that Congress is not going to tolerate a military takeover and throwing everyone in jail,” Graham told CNN.
According to Graham, the idea to send the Sens. was Sec. of State John Kerry’s and Obama agreed that sending members of his “political opposition” would have a “more powerful” impact reinforcing the U.S. position of wanting elections held “sooner rather than later, and putting people in opposition in jail is not sustainable,” the article said.
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“This is the way it used to be. All hands on deck. We want it to be that way again,” Graham said, referring to international crises.
He also noted that McCain going to Egypt on the president’s behalf should be especially symbolic, since he is not just Republican senator but Obama’s former opponent for the White House.
“I think it really does demonstrate how democracy works. They didn’t put John McCain in jail so he could never come back again,” Graham said.
“He has been helpful and challenging,” Graham said of McCain’s actions towards Obama since the GOP presidential nominee lost to the then-senator from Illinois in 2008. “This is the way over time things can work.”