South Carolina Election: Republicans Should Challenge Lindsey Graham
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) may have come across some trouble in his home state. Since his criticism of Senator Rand Paul's (R-Ky.) filibuster of the nomination of CIA Director John Brennan, an act that has shifted public support against drone use, Graham has received a lot of backlash not only from constituents, but also on a national party level. This is bad news for Senator Graham — here are reasons why the Republican Party should primary him in South Carolina's 2014 senatorial race.
Senator Graham's comments on Senator Paul's 13-hour filibuster, which was about the importance of maintaining civil liberties and understanding the jurisdiction of controversial drone policy, sparked a lot of opposition around the internet, with the hashtag #PrimaryLindsey coming in from people around the nation. A clip of an interview with Senator Graham appeared on Fox News, in which he calls the debate over drones "ridiculous." This did not appeal to most Americans, as a new poll suggests that a majority of people oppose launching drones on terrorist suspects in the United States.
Fox News, Clip:
Those who are dedicated to restoring liberty back into the platform of the Republican Party should see this as a fantastic opportunity to oust an incumbent and elect someone who respects civil liberties and freedom.
Nancy Mace, a graduate from The Citadel Military College of South Carolina, may be one primary challenger. Mace has a master’s degree in mass communication and journalism, as well as a bachelor’s in business. There is no doubt that she is a well educated person, but it will take more than just a degree to take on Graham. Federal senate races are very expensive and Senator Graham is not waiting to start funding his. So far, he has raised $5.4 million for reelection, but even if the challenger cannot match donations, they still have a shot. Just take a look at the senator's recent actions and voting record.
Lindsey Graham's "Yea" vote on the National Defense Authorization Act, which includes a provision allowing the government to indefinitely detain U.S Citizens, is just one of the many key votes that should cost him reelection. This provision for indefinite detention has been widely seen as unconstitutional, since it suggests that the federal government can hold a citizen without trial or attorney to prove their case.
Lindsey Graham votes "Yea" on National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) picture from votesmart.org
When it comes to raising taxes, the senator hasn't done much better. He signed a pledge not to raise taxes and then later admitted he would violate it. There is much more of his voting record that raises concerns for his constituents in a very conservative state.
Whoever challenges Graham needs to play their cards right if they want to pull off a victory in the primary, but the opportunity is there. Lindsey Graham has violated his oath of office by supporting unconstitutional legislation, and our representatives cannot ignore those who care about civil liberties and the Bill of Rights.