The PJ Tatler

Anyone Can Run for President. Just Ask Lindsey Graham

Some little kids dream of growing up to be firemen or policemen. Some dream of being astronauts or sports stars.

But after he confirmed on Meet the Press that he had formed an exploratory committee to “test the waters” for a 2016 presidential nomination run, you have to wonder if there isn’t a lot of little boy in South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.


Sen. Lindsey Graham acknowledged on Sunday he’s seriously exploring a bid for the Republican presidential nomination.

Asked on NBC’s “Meet the Press” if he had started polling voters about his chances in 2016, Graham said he is not polling, “but we set up a testing-the-waters committee under the IRS code that will allow me to look beyond South Carolina as to whether or not a guy like Lindsey Graham has a viable path.”

“I don’t know where this will go, but I’m definitely going to look at it,” said Graham, the senior senator from South Carolina.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said last week he was strongly encouraging Graham to run for president.

Graham, 60, is not seen by, well, anyone in the Republican Party as presidential material — except his fellow “maverick” John McCain. And I think McCain is just being nice. After all, he called Graham his “illegitimate son.” How much nicer can you get?

Still, there must be some compelling, overwhelming reason why someone would want to put themselves through the presidential grind. This is what Graham told Hugh Hewitt:

LG: If I do it, I’ll be on all the ballots. I’m not doing it to make a statement. I’m doing it to change the country and offer what I have to offer to the American people, and to my party. And I think I’m uniquely qualified to deal with the threats we’re talking about. So when I hear a United States Senator trying to rationalize that Iraq created the problems in France, and when I hear some libertarians on my side of the aisle associated with the Republican Party say that it is our interventionist policy that has brought people down on us, they don’t know what they’re talking about. When I hear the president of the United States and his chief spokesperson failing to admit that we’re in a religious war, it really bothers me. And I want to be somebody who can talk about the world as it really is…

LG: I think in the next few months. I’ve got to look and see. I know I do well in South Carolina. I should, because that’s where I’m from. But you can’t be president of South Carolina. So I’m going to have to look and see. Is there a lane for a guy who really does understand the threats we face regarding our national security, understands the consequences of sequestration’s ability to defend ourselves? Is there a lane for a guy like me who will say you’ve got to reform immigration, not just secure the border, but rationally deal with the 11 million? At the end of the day, I don’t know until I look.

There may be a “lane” alright, but it’s not in the Republican Party. Graham has never seen a country he didn’t think we should invade, or bomb, or something. With him president, we may end up threatening France. He would carry the distinction of being the most interventionist candidate on the ballot.

He supported comprehensive immigration reform, tax increases, and climate change legislation. And if there were four strikes in baseball, no doubt his opponents could find something else against him.

Graham is unmarried, which has caused all sorts of gum flapping about his sexual orientation. One of his primary opponents called him “ambiguously gay.” I don’t know or care if Graham is gay, if he’s a closet case, or if he even has sex at all. There are just some images I don’t want floating around in my head.

Graham is plenty conservative enough for me, but what do I know? I’m a RINO. It’s the rest of the party that he has to worry about. And if he were smart, he’s save himself the time and aggravation and fold up that “exploratory committee” pronto.