Republican South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham went after Democrats Sunday for what he believed was their strategy to change the Senate rules if they couldn’t win votes.
Graham spoke on “Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace” about the possibility that Democrats could change the threshold for the filibuster or get rid of it altogether. (RELATED: ‘I Would Talk ‘Til I Fell Over’ — Lindsey Graham Responds To Biden’s Idea Of Bringing Back Talking Filibuster)
Wallace began the conversation with a question about Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin’s attempt to find middle ground on a voting rights bill that would omit some of the more drastic changes proposed in HR-1.
“Can you go along with the Manchin stripped-down version, and if not, why not?” Wallace asked.
“As much as I like Joe Manchin, the answer would be no,” Graham replied, referring to SR-1 as “the biggest power grab in the history of the country.”
Wallace noted that several of the provisions Graham objected to were not included in Manchin’s proposed compromise bill — and then pointed out what he saw as the biggest risk in not working with Manchin.
“Do you run the risk that Manchin and a couple of other moderate senators will eventually say look, bipartisanship isn’t working and, you know what, we are not going to kill the filibuster but we are going to reduce the number of votes you need to stop a debate from 60 to 55. Do you run that risk?” he asked.
“I hope not because I was in Joe Manchin’s shoes,” Graham said.
“When we had the House and the Senate and the White House under President Trump, I had a bunch of Democrats wanting to sign a letter with me protecting the filibuster,” Graham added. “Every one of those Democrats have fled for the hills, so I was beat on every day.”
Graham said he held this position because ” it’s bad for the Senate.”
“I hope these Democrats understand it’s bad for the Senate to change the rules and I don’t want to be extorted.”