U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham justified his statement on Saturday that there would be “riots in the streets” if former President Donald Trump was charged with mishandling secret information by stating that he deplored the kind of violence that characterized the Capitol riot last year.
Graham, a Republican from South Carolina and a trusted Trump friend, said to CNBC’s Steve Sedgwick at the Ambrosetti Forum in Italy, “What I attempted to do was express the obvious.”
The raid on [former] President Trump’s residence, who is expected to be the contender for 2024, “better bear some fruit here,” he continued. If the issue is merely improper management of sensitive information, Hillary Clinton was held to a standard that was established.
Graham said that if it’s like what happened to Clinton and he’s prosecuted, it’ll be one of the most disruptive events in America. “Our country, the people on our side, believe that when it comes to the justice system, there are no rules regarding Trump, [it’s a case of] ‘get him, it doesn’t matter how you get him,'” Graham said.
Trump “was a Significant President.”
Trump is currently being investigated and faces possible indictment over how he handled confidential White House documents that he brought to his Mar-a-Lago, Florida, home. A heavily redacted affidavit that was made public last week revealed how an FBI search of Trump’s resort in July was prompted by suspicions of unlawful activity and obstruction of justice.
Graham said that he agreed that it was important to “handle classified information appropriately,” but he reiterated once more that “mishandling classified information is really awful, but we can’t have a system where one person gets prosecuted and the other doesn’t.” When asked if Trump would make the best Republican Party representative in 2024, Graham responded, “I think he could be.”
“Whether or not you like Trump, he was a significant president… As long as you stay within the bounds, I believe that having a powerful and unexpected American president is a wonderful thing. His issue is personal, and although his programs have endured, the question is: Has the American public grown weary of him personally? Only time will tell. But I’ll say this: If there’s a policy discussion in 2024 following the Biden administration, I like his prospects. He’ll be in trouble if it’s a personality contest.
Clause for Speaking and Debating
Graham’s most recent attempt to contest a subpoena for his testimony before a special grand jury in Georgia, which is looking into potential criminal election meddling by Trump and his associates in 2020, was rejected by a federal court on Thursday.
The judge did, however, restrict the scope of the subpoena by ruling that Graham could not be questioned regarding calls he made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his staff in the weeks before the November 2020 presidential election between Trump and Joe Biden.
It comes after Graham’s repeated attempts to get out of giving testimony by claiming that the “speech or debate” clause of the U.S. Constitution affords him immunity since he is a member of Congress.
On Saturday, Graham maintained his stance, stating, “I didn’t start this argument. A national election is being investigated, and the country’s prosecutor has decided to interview each and every one who may have had an involvement in the election. We have a speech or debate immunity clause in our Constitution as United States Senators so that we won’t constantly be taken to court across the nation for our actions.
The Graham Team Claims that The Acts Were Appropriate.
After the 2020 election, Graham made calls to Georgian officials, according to Graham’s legal team, which constituted legislative activity and was directly relevant to his duties as the Senate Judiciary Committee’s chairman at the time. Graham’s legal team said in court documents that the subpoena “implicates Senator Graham’s legislative acts and must, therefore, be quashed.”
In court last Wednesday, Graham’s attorney Brian Lea claimed that the senator shouldn’t be coerced into testifying. He said, “We shouldn’t be playing whack-a-mole with the District Attorney.” Lea said that “they have proved nothing other than un-sided claims,” and that “constitutional immunity” cannot be breached “for a fishing expedition.”