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Tuesday Thread: Is Lindsey Graham stoking a civil war?
He's been criticized for promoting violence in saying "riots" will occur if Trump is prosecuted. He's actually inviting another insurrection.
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Senator Lindsey Graham has come under a lot of criticism for saying on Fox News that if Donald Trump is prosecuted it will result in “riots in the street.”
In an editorial The Washington Post said there is “no excuse for this irresponsible rhetoric, which not only invites violence but also defies democratic norms” and said Graham better:
Mr. Graham, a former prosecutor who has chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee, should understand how his comments could heighten the risk of unrest. He should know that the Justice Department does, too. By talking about the possibility of violence without condemning it, Mr. Trump’s sympathizers play a game of intimidation: daring Attorney General Merrick Garland to bring a case and face the consequences. As wary as Mr. Garland and his colleagues should be of overusing their power in tumultuous times, federal prosecutors must not allow themselves to be bullied out of doing their jobs.
But columnist Greg Sargent goes further into what Graham is intentionally doing:
The goal here is to erase the very idea that the law can be applied to Trump in a neutral and legitimate way. All law enforcement activity directed at Trump is inherently politically motivated.
Graham said this straight out: When it comes to Trump, “there is no law.” That’s what Trump and his propagandists want the public (or at least Trump’s base) to come to believe, so Americans tune out the facts and conclude prosecution cannot be legitimate.
I agree that Trump and Graham and other Trump defenders are trying to claim the law can’t be applied neutrally to Trump, trying to claim the entire system is corrupt — a playbook Trump has used since he became president and continuing long after.
But I also believe Graham is seriously attempting to stoke a violent attack, at Trump’s behest, so that the Justice Department becomes scared. I’m not sure he wants another insurrection — right now — but rather he wants more threats against FBI agents, more incidents in which FBI buildings have to be protected, so that Garland gets the message. Again, all under direction from Trump.
In making the statement, however, he is doing exactly what Trump did in telling the the Proud Boys to “stack back and stand by:” He’s encouraging insurrection, uprisings and civil war, which of course was the fuel that the Proud Boys, the Oath Keepers and others ran on in plotting the attack on the Capitol.
I believe Senate Democrats should call him to account by bringing him before a committee and forcing him to answer questions. It’s time to stop this dangerous lackey from getting any further.
Join in the discussion (today’s discussion thread open to all subscribers) and let me know your thoughts!