Now you’re acting more like yourself, Sen. Graham

I don’t know what LIndsey Graham thought he was doing the last few months, building his new reputation as the “Trump Whisperer.” Did he think he could manage the grossly unfit POTUS, guiding him gently toward wise policy on immigration and making him think it was his idea?

Whatever his plan was, it didn’t work, and the moment that became fully apparent seems to have been the infamous “s___hole” meeting a week ago.

Now, he seems to have decided to concentrate his attention on actual grownups, people with whom he can have intelligent conversations and not feel the need to delouse afterward. He sent out this release yesterday:

Momentum Growing for Immigration Reform Proposal

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today welcomed the support of Republican Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine), Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), and Mike Rounds (R-South Dakota) for a path forward on DACA and immigration reform.Graham-080106-18270- 0005

They will join Republicans Graham, Jeff Flake (R-Arizona) and Cory Gardner (R-Colorado) in backing this measure and working to protect Dreamers.

“It’s imperative that Congress act quickly so that young people who were brought to the United States as children, through no decision of their own, can stop living in fear of deportation.  I have talked with Dreamers living in Maine who have grown up in our State and have known no other country as their home,” said Senator Collins.  “This issue transcends political divisions, with members of both parties expressing sympathy for the Dreamers and support for a legislative solution.  I am proud to join this growing bipartisan group of leaders in advancing this important effort that will fairly address the needs of the DACA population, strengthen border security, and help improve our immigration system.”

“President Trump and the bipartisan members of Congress who met at the White House ought to be able to agree on a proposal that both secures our borders and provides a solution for DACA recipients,” said Senator Alexander. “I intend to support such an agreement which is why I’m cosponsoring the Graham proposal as a starting point for reaching consensus and will support other responsible proposals.”

“I am proud to be a part of this bipartisan solution for the Dreamers,” said Senator Murkowski. “We should not punish children for the actions of their parents. Those who were brought to this country by their parents, were raised here, educated here, lived here, and dreamed here, should be welcomed to stay here. They should have the right to work and a path to citizenship. Fulfilling that dream renews our American Dream. I have consistently cosponsored legislation to provide just that, and I am heartened to see so many diverse voices supporting a legislative solution for the Dreamers.”

“I thank Senator Graham and others for their commitment to strengthening border security and fixing our broken immigration system,” said Senator Rounds. “The current proposal is an important first step in more immigration reform that secures our borders and transitions to a merit-based system. Legal immigration is a proud part of our nation’s history, and today it plays an important role in our economy – including South Dakota’s own workforce which depends on temporary, H2B visa workers to fill jobs during the busy tourism and construction seasons. While this bill is not perfect, I will continue to work on a product that includes appropriate e-verify provisions, a stronger border security system and lays the framework for more reform, including work visas. These are the provisions required for me to support the bill in final form so we can get to the next phase, in which permanently increasing the cap of H2B visas will be a top priority for me.”

“I’m very pleased that our bipartisan proposal continues to gain support among my Republican colleagues,” said Senator Graham. “Our hope is to bring forward a proposal that leads to a solution the President can embrace. The goal is to begin fixing a broken immigration system by fairly dealing with the DACA population, securing our border, and moving toward a merit-based immigration system. This proposal would receive wide support and is a good solution for Phase I as we move to Phase II, comprehensive immigration reform.  As we debate how to fix a broken immigration system and who to allow to become an American, we must not change what it means to be an American.  As I’ve always said, America is an idea defined by its ideals – not by its people.  The idea of self-determination and freedom to speak one’s mind, to worship God as you see fit, and to be served by the government – not the other way around.  I believe there is bipartisan support for that concept.”

 Highlights of the bipartisan proposal include:

  • At Least Ten Years Before a Dreamer Can Become an American Citizen:  It would be at least ten years before a Dreamer can become an American citizen.  The legislation calls for a 12-year waiting period, but select Dreamers who registered for DACA could earn up to two years credit for time. Dreamers – who do not receive any federal assistance or welfare today – will likely continue to be ineligible for welfare and federal assistance for the first five years they have legal status.
  • The current Diversity Visa Lottery will be abolished, and a new merit-based immigration system instituted in its place. Half of the Diversity Lottery visas would be allocated to a new system for ‘priority countries’ who are currently underrepresented in visa allocation.  A new merit-based system would ensure those visas are awarded to those most ready to succeed in the United States.  The other half of the visas would be allocated to recipients of Temporary Protected Status (TPS).  After the TPS backlog is cleared, all of the former Diversity Lottery visas will be allocated to nationals of priority countries under the new, merit-based system.
  • Additional Border Security Measures: The proposal contains $2.7 billion in border security improvements, including the planning, design, and construction of a border wall and additional surveillance and technology along the border. There will also be several provisions from border security pieces of legislation related to border infrastructure and Customs and Border Protection operations and oversight.
  • Down Payment on Chain Migration: Parents of Dreamers would be eligible for 3-year renewable work permits.  There are no new pathways for them to obtain American citizenship.  If they brought a child who becomes a beneficiary of the Dream Act into the country, they would be ineligible to be sponsored for lawful permanent residence or citizenship by any of their children. Additionally, lawful permanent residents would only be able to sponsor their nuclear family members, their spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21.

They may not succeed, but at least he’s now working with people highly unlikely to disrupt a bipartisan meeting with an obscene racist rant…

11 thoughts on “Now you’re acting more like yourself, Sen. Graham

  1. Tim Ervolina

    Perhaps the good Senator should review Dauphin in Henry V: “In cases of defense ’tis best to weigh the enemy more mighty than he seems.”

    Trump is about Trump, no matter who last whispers in his ear. He is not playing a game of five dimensional chess. There is no grand scheme, no overarching Trump Doctrine, no strategy beyond peddling cheap patent medicine to a people thirsting for miracle cures. Lindsey needs to be wiser than he has shown himself to be of late. The only way to wrest the Republic back from those who do not hold republican values is to resist. This proposal is interesting, (mostly) fair, and would probably get (modest) support from both parties. But Fox and Friends will rail about MS-13 and the rest of the Trumposphere will shudder in horror. Thus it will likely fail, whether in the Congress or under the veto pen.

    It’s a start. Though I’m not sure if it’s enough for me to ever cast my vote for Lindsey again. Depends on who is golfing partners are.

  2. Doug Ross

    “obscene racist rant”

    Each of those three words is an exaggeration of whatever happened. Continuing this tactic of demonizing Trump is not going to work well.

    The bill’s details above are pretty weak. Typical legalese that actually accomplishes little. Just make the dreamers citizens. Be done with it. And give Trump his wall in return so he signs it. This bill is weak sauce.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      It was obscene. It was racist. It was a rant — an undisciplined, obscene, racist digression from the topic at hand.

      If you can’t see those three things clearly, then it’s no wonder we disagree so often…

    2. bud

      It was certainly obscene. That is just a fact given how we generally define the word ‘shit’. (I’ll probably be censured but oh well).

      Clearly it was a “rant” in that he spoke in these terms as defined by the dictionary:
      “speak or shout at length in a wild, impassioned way”

      But was it “racist”? That is certainly something that can be debated. Given Trump’s long history of making suggestive comments about people of non-European decent we can only infer that. Plus the fact that he compared the so called “shithole” nations to a generally white one the evidence points in that direction but is not conclusive based on this comment alone. But I no longer have any doubt that when he utters these types of comments he is uttering an “obscene racist rant”. Apparently it takes more to convince Doug.

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        You give him too much benefit of the doubt. He defined Haiti and African countries in terms of excrement. And he didn’t just compare them unfavorably to “a generally white one.” He compared them to a Scandinavian country.

        I mean, seriously — what conjures up a picture of whiteness more extreme even than England or Germany? Scandinavia. We’re talking whiter than white here, people…

        1. bud

          Not sure that I give him MUCH benefit of the doubt. But perhaps if this was the first time Trump had made such derogatory comments about a nation populated by people of color we could perhaps cut him some slack. What I’m saying specifically is that the entire body of work regarding Trump’s comments leave no doubt that he uttered an obscene racist rant. Frankly I would have used vulgar instead of obscene to describe his rant since obscene has more of a sexual connotation. So I’m splitting hairs a bit. The bottom line is that Trump is a disgusting human being and he proves it practically every day.

  3. Harry Harris

    There’s a lot in the bill for Republicans to like. No citizenship for 12 years. That’s the main Republican goal in immigration reform. They want cheap workers, but never let them vote. “Merit-based visas.” Let in only the ones who are at least rounding second base, heading for third. Make sure DREAM act parents can’t get long-term legal status or citizenship. The DREAM kids will have at least 12 years to stop being ticked-off before they can vote. Start building the wall – maybe after we spend a few billion, the Mexicans will start making those payments we’ve been hearing about.

  4. Richard

    I read a good quote today regarding deporting illegals, ” I can’t quite figure out how you can proudly wave the flag of another country, but consider it punishment to be sent back there.”

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      And that would be relevant if based on actual stories of actual people who waved such a flag, and then were distressed to be deported. Actual individuals. You don’t get to hold one Mexican responsible for the actions of another.

      Then we’d have something to talk about. And here’s what I’d say: Plenty of people enjoy displaying the flags of their ancestors’ countries — Irish and Italians are big on displaying orange and green, for instance. It is in no way a contradiction if, say, an Italian-American is distressed at being sent “home” to Italy and not allowed to return to his actual home, the United States.

      If you go back 400 years, most of my ancestors were in England. And sure enough, I’m a major Anglophile. After 9/11, I wanted to fly a Union Jack from our front porch along with the U.S. flag, in recognition of the way the Brits were fighting alongside us, but my wife nixed the plan (she’s Irish; you know how they are).

      Frankly, I’d love for the government to pay for me to go back to England for a visit. But I’d be extremely upset if I were then not allowed to return to this, my own country.

      I think the most recent ancestor of mine came to this country in the early 1700s, and most I’ve been able to trace to came during the century before that. But we’re all of immigrant stock, including the folks who crossed the land bridge from Asia millennia ago.

      So… tell me again what that’s such a “good quote.” Because it’s not that hard to “figure out.”


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