From the September attack in Benghazi, Libya to the contentious confirmation hearing of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has been an intense critic of President Barack Obama in recent months, prompting some to suggest that the two-term Republican is grandstanding in order to placate his conservative constituency.
In a story published online Monday in the New York Times, Graham disputed that assertion, highlighting what he views as a serious failure by the Obama administration both in Benghazi and Syria.
“It would be a disservice to write our concerns about Libya off as a partisan deal motivated by politics,” Graham said, “given the national security implications of what’s happened in Libya and Syria.”
But he conceded that going after Obama does yield a political benefit in his crimson red state.
“Anytime you challenge the president, Obama, it’s good politics,” Graham said, while noting that he was also critical of former President George W. Bush.
While there have been some suggestions that Graham, up for re-election next year, could face a primary fight from the right, the story in the Times quotes some South Carolina insiders who contend that it’s unlikely. Read the entire piece here.