Graham to block all Obama nominees over Benghazi

This morning, Lindsey Graham Tweeted:

We now know #Benghazi was the result of a pre-planned terrorist attack by high-level al-Qaeda operatives. It was never a protest of a video.

And I responded:

But haven’t we known that for a year — like, from the first week….?

I still don’t get the intensity and duration of Sen. Graham’s umbrage toward the administration over the horrible events at Benghazi 13 months ago. Particularly since I don’t recall the cover-up; I distinctly remember reading that administration officials were saying it was a terrorist attack within hours after first reports came in.

And now — this indiscriminate use of the Senate’s advice-and-consent power, and of one senator’s ability to gum up the works, seems contrary to Graham’s own principles:

Sen. Lindsey Graham said Monday he will hold up “every appointment” in the Senate until more questions are answered on Benghazi.

“I’m going to block every appointment in the United States Senate until the survivors [of the attack in Benghazi] are being made available to the Congress,” Graham said on Fox News’s “Fox and Friends.” “I’m tired of hearing from people on TV and reading about stuff in books.”…

Is he not the guy who goes around saying that elections have consequences, and that the president’s wishes regarding nominees should be respected, barring strong, specific reasons to the contrary? So how can he block all nominations, regardless of the respective merits in each case, in order to try to force the administration to do something unrelated? Whatever happened to the spirit of the Gang of 14?

This escalation is said to have been brought on by a “60 Minutes” segment last night. I can see how the senator might be incensed to see CBS reporting things that the administration refuses to provide to Congress.

But this blanket blocking of nominees seems disproportionate to me…

16 thoughts on “Graham to block all Obama nominees over Benghazi

  1. bud

    This is a political stunt pure and simple. There have been zillions of hearings, hours of interviews and we know what happened for Pete’s sake. Sure there were mistakes made. But this kind of grandstanding by the contemptible Lindsey Graham is beyond the pale.

  2. Mark Stewart

    And this from the one sane legislator from SC who said only a couple of weeks ago that one does not shut down the government over political disagreement?

    It isn’t delicious irony – which I usually enjoy.

    Here, he is just grossly pandering to the minority. And continuing his slide into the past tense. Graham will lose an election, not this one, because of the accumulation of these total lapses in judgment; not because of some radical primary challenger. His demise will be self inflicted – and at this point he will have earned it. All by himself.

    1. Doug Ross

      He won’t lose. Ever. He will continue on in the tradition of Strom Thurmond to the point of irrelevance because South Carolinians prefer the wrong way their way than anything new. He will always be able to get enough Democrats to vote for him since they can’t seem to find any qualified candidates to run against him.
      As long as their are defense contractors, he’ll have a campaign war chest overflowing with money.

  3. bud

    I agree with Doug. He panders just enough to keep the tea party crazies at bay while picking up a few moderate voters who deplore the tea party. But mostly he’ll win because people in South Carolina vote on the basis of name recognition and habit. Doesn’t make a bit of sense but that’s the way it is. How else to explain a 94 year old, obviously senile Strom Thurmond sailing through the primaries and the general?

  4. Barry

    “Particularly since I don’t recall the cover-up; I distinctly remember reading that administration officials were saying it was a terrorist attack within hours after first reports came in.”

    Hmmm……. a little revision going on there.

    U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi last week was not premeditated, DIRECTLY CONTRADICTING TOP LIBYAN OFFICIALS who say the attack was planned in advance

    “Our current best assessment, based on the information that we have at present, is that, in fact, what this began as, it was a spontaneous – not a premeditated – response to what had transpired in Cairo,

  5. Barry

    “We believe that folks in Benghazi, a small number of people came to the embassy to – or to the consulate, rather” – Susan Rice

    Rice’s account directly contradicts that of Libyan President Mohamed Yousef El-Magariaf

  6. Doug Ross

    New Winthrop poll shows Lindsey’s favorability rating in the state is 5 points BELOW Nikki Haley’s… 44% to 39%.

    It’s interesting to see just how biased The State is toward Graham.

    “Graham’s approval rating among South Carolina residents overall and registered voters also dropped slightly — to 39.7 percent among S.C. residents, down from 44.8 percent in April.”

    SLIGHTLY? More than 60% of the respondents don’t think he is doing a good job. That should be a major headline.

    Have no fear, though. Graham will shift as far right as he needs to in order to win the primary and make the uninformed lemmings in this state think he’s been fighting Obama for six years.

    It will be funny though if he has to go to Nikki to get HER support since she’s considered a more favorable politician.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Doug, the poll has a margin of error of 3.3 percent.

      So, his actual support in the electorate could be 42 or 43 percent now, and could have been less than 42 percent back then.

      Hence the “slight.” Even that overstates it. What it is is an APPARENT drop of 5 percent.

      Also, out of all the data that could have been chosen from this poll for the lede, two items were chosen — the fact that Nikki is doing better, and that Lindsey “fell below 50 percent” among GOP voters. So his drop was heavily emphasized.

      Bottom line, you’re completely wrong with your perception of “bias.” That was all worded quite impartially; the story even went out of its way to present a negative data point about the senator.

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        Of course, it could also be 36 percent now, and 48 percent back then. We just don’t know.

        Also remember that there’s a one in twenty chance that the numbers are off by more than 3.3 percent…

      2. Barry


        Just watched Anderson Cooper and CNN tonight (about 8:25pm). He had 2 reporters on talking about the Benghazi issue- and it sounded like there was more to it than some conspiracy stuff.

      1. Doug Ross

        I accept your explanation on the headline. My bad.

        But I still think the story understates the precipitous drop Graham has experienced in six months. It’s worthy of a story by itself. It suggests he’s vulnerable — which would be THE biggest political story in South Carolina in 2014 were it to happen.

        Who would ever have thought that Graham would trail Haley in popularity – whether it is within the margin of error or not? He could (hopefully) very well be one of the casualties of the anti-Congress mentality.

        1. Barry

          Haley will campaign hard for Graham

          and of course as always- independents in South Carolina will vote heavily in Graham’s favor which will make him the easy favorite.

          1. Mark Stewart

            Only because he isn’t either of the other GOP radicals; independents would likely want another option given Graham’s now incessant pandering to the shallow end. Lee Bright is the biggest knucklehead in SC politics today. And possibly of the last few decades – although that would be a list no one would want to compile.


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