Lindsey Graham wonders, “How do you say ‘no’ to the President?”

Last week, when Senator Rand Paul was in the middle of his 13-hour filibuster, Lindsey Graham was busy being wined and dined by President Obama.  

It came as no surprise that the next morning, Graham took to the Senate floor to criticize Paul’s efforts. Then, this weekend, Graham voiced support for legislation that would force states to divulge confidential mental health records to the Federal Government, violating the 2nd, 4th, and 10th Amendments all at one time.

Naturally, people have been asking Graham to explain his actions. Why spend time playing politics with a President who has done little but demonize and demagogue his opposition in Congress?

Graham’s answer is pretty telling: “How do you say ‘no’ to the President?”

from The Hill (emphasis mine):

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) praised President Obama for reaching out to organize a private dinner with a group of Republicans on Wednesday night. 

Graham, speaking a few hours before he and a number of other Republican senators were to dine with Obama at D.C.’s Jefferson Hotel, said the president called him and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) a few weeks ago asking them to gather some Republican senators for a sit-down meeting. 

"The president called Sen. McCain and myself a couple of weeks ago," Graham said. 

"I’m assuming the president wants to talk seriously about the issues of the day. And if he just wants to have a dinner so we can get to know each other better that’s fine with me," he added. "So how do you say no to the president, who would like to have dinner with some of your colleagues? You don’t. And anybody who would do that in this business is in the wrong position.”

read the rest

The answer is actually fairly simple: you just say “no.”  Look, this isn’t just about saying “no” to a dinner invite.  

The fact is that when it matters most, Lindsey Graham just can’t say “no” to the President.

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