Lindsey Graham 2.0 rattles Dem colleagues by kicking off dig into Clinton, Obama controversies

Sen. Lindsey Graham is kicking off his new role on the Senate Judiciary Committee with a bang, angering Democrats with his plans as chairman.

The South Carolina Republican and newly minted chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee revealed on Monday several controversial Clinton and Obama-era issues that he will be focusing on, according to The Hill.

(Image: Flickr)

Graham intends to look into areas ranging from an investigation into the conduct of Democrats during Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation, to how the FBI conducted its probe into Hillary Clinton’s private email server and the targeting of former Trump campaign aide Carter Page through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant applications.

Before being named chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Graham said he planned to “get to the bottom” of FISA abuse and told Fox News last month that he believed the FBI was “in the tank” for Clinton.

Senior Democrats on the Committee, however, were not enthusiastic about Graham’s plans.

Sen. Dick Durbin compared Graham’s agenda to the “thrilling days of yesteryear.”

“This is going to be like the History Channel it turns out. Instead of taking a look at the current issues, Lindsey Graham wants to go back and answer important questions about the Bermuda Triangle and Hillary Clinton,” the Illinois Democrat told The Hill.

Durbin joked that though he was “concerned” about Graham’s plans,  “you know there is that question about Jimmy Carter which he probably wants to ask.”

Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, another Democratic member of the panel, suggested that Graham should “investigate Benghazi some more too,” making a dig about the nearly three-year-long House probe that Democrats were convinced was an effort to smear then-secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

But Graham, who is up for reelection in 2020, is no stranger to working with Democrats even on divisive issues. Recently becoming a staunch supporter of President Donald Trump after being a very vocal critic, Graham has successfully worked as deal-maker with Democrats on the Committee including drafting legislation with Sens. Christopher Coons, Cory Booker and Thom Tillis to protect special counsel Robert Mueller from being fired without “good cause.”

(Image: Flickr)

The GOP lawmaker dressed down Democrats in fiery remarks during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings but has also worked with Durbin on immigration reform, attempting to bring to an end the weeks-long partial government shutdown.

Coons, a member of the Judiciary Committee, warned that  “it depends how divisive partisan topics are approached” and that Graham should be careful moving forward with his plans as chairman.

“It is possible for the Judiciary Committee to remain a highly functional committee even while tackling controversial topics,” The Delaware Democrat told The Hill. When he was asked if he meant that Graham should concentrate on bipartisan areas first, Coons replied: “I think that would be a more constructive way to start, I’ll simply put it that way.”

The tone of Graham’s probes were revealed in tweets last week where he doubled down on his plans as chairman.

Twitter users celebrated Graham’s long-overdue plans and thanks him for “staying in the game.”

Frieda Powers


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