Lindsey Graham Got Booted From the GOP Debates, So He Went Online and Drank Wine Instead

He posed such important questions as “why do we got a British guy asking questions?”

Matt Baron/REX Shutterstock


Sen. Lindsey Graham’s quick wit and unapologetically hawkish stances made him a darling of the GOP undercard debates, but his falling poll numbers meant he was barred from the stage on Tuesday night. Both he and former New York Gov. George Pataki were booted from the debate stage altogether after their averages in national polls fell below 1 percent.

The senator from South Carolina instead held court on Sidewire, a newly released app that serves as a kind of distilled version of political Twitter. There, he posted his own commentary on the debate and fielded questions from the political journalists, analysts, and campaign staffers who populate the app. Here were the best moments of his solo pseudo-debate:

1. Didn’t we fight a war about this? When debate moderator Gerard Baker of the Wall Street Journal began speaking, Graham didn’t take to Baker’s English accent.

2. It’s all in the details. Carly Fiorina brought up her proposal for a three-page tax plan to replace the current, much longer version of the tax code. But Graham requested an important clarification.

3. Sick burn, bro. Inevitably, Graham’s longtime friend and campaign trail buddy, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, showed up on Sidewire to offer support for Graham. In return, Graham warned his 79-year-old colleague not to miss his bedtime.

 

 

On the whole, Graham seemed to enjoy kicking back and lobbing answers and one-liners from his computer:

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.