Right after the violent Jan. 6 coup attempt—while the piquant musk of Trump’s orc horde still hung heavy over the National Mall—Graham famously said, with regard to Trump, “Count me out.” Well, he’s long been back in. But with the leak of a recording in which Graham indicated, in the hours after the Jan. 6 Capitol assault, that then-President-elect Joe Biden could be just what the nation needed to clear the Big Mac and borscht smell from the Oval Office, he’s resuming his apology tour of conservative media.
WATTERS: “One thing I want to ask you, though. I want to play some sound. This is you talking, I think Jan. 6, in the Capitol to some New York Times reporters. You said that Joe Biden would be the man to heal the country and unite us and bring us all together. Let’s listen and get your reaction.
GRAHAM [AUDIO CLIP]: “We’ll actually come out of this thing stronger. Moments like this reset. People will calm down. People will say, ‘I don’t want to be associated with that.’ This is a group within a group. What this does, there will be a rallying effect for a while the country says, ‘We’re better than this.’”
NYT REPORTER JONATHAN MARTIN [AUDIO CLIP]: “And Biden will help that, right?”
GRAHAM [AUDIO CLIP]: “Totally. He’ll be maybe the best person to have, right? I mean, how mad can you get at Joe Biden?”
WATTERS: “Joe Biden, the best person to have? Do you really believe that?”
GRAHAM: “I was wrong. [Laughs] You know, I’ve known Joe for 30 years, he’s a nice guy, but he’s been a disaster as president. You know, this was literally happening on the day of Jan. 6, and I was hoping that President Biden could bring us together. Common sense tells you that you want the president to be successful, but not only has he failed to bring us together, he has made us less safe, he has ruined our economy. All the bad guys are moving around the world. They didn’t do this on Trump’s watch because they were afraid of him. Nobody fears Joe Biden abroad, and at home his policies are failing. So, yes, I would have loved him to be successful, but the truth of the matter is he has not been. It’s now time to pick a new president. That comes in 2024. Take back the Senate in 2022. Help the Ukrainians beat the Russians in Ukraine so they don’t keep going throughout Europe …, and trying to stop China from taking Taiwan and secure our border. We got a mess on our hands, but you know what, I’m optimistic. There’s no other place that I’d rather live than the United States.”
WATTERS: “I’m optimistic, too, but I’m not optimistic about speaking to New York Times reporters. If I was a senator I’d never do it, and I’d never do it at Fox.”
GRAHAM: “Probably good advice. [Laughs]”
Honestly, I don’t know if it’s possible to fail more as president than Trump did. History tends to frown on people who literally attempt to end American democracy. We can agree to disagree on that point, I suppose, but I have a few other nitpicks, too.
1) President Biden inherited a cratered economy with 2.9 million fewer jobs than it had when Trump began his reign of whatever-that-was. Come to think of it, Democratic presidents always seem to inherit cratered economies from Republican presidents. Kind of makes you wonder why anyone thinks Republicans are economic miracle workers.
2) Vladimir Putin was not afraid of Donald Trump. If he was so terrified of Trump, he wouldn’t have moved heaven and Earth to try to get him reelected. And in a second Trump term, Putin would have had lots of low-hanging Eastern European fruit to choose from, given that Trump had planned to pull the U.S. out of NATO in his second term. Oh, also, this …
The truth is, President Biden inherited a hot mess from Trump after Barack Obama turned George W. Bush’s hot mess into widespread prosperity. Republicans are master alchemists whose only trick, sadly, is turning gold into lead. Though they are somewhat better illusionists, given that they’ve managed to turn a traitor into a patriot in the eyes of millions of Fox-besotted zombies.
Lindsey’s Fox News grovel-fest may be painful for us to watch, but it likely works like a charm with low-information voters in the MAGA base. That said, it’s unlikely Lind will ever reclaim his dignity, because Donald Trump has eaten it—along with the meeping souls of millions more Americans.
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