The Senate Ethics Committee on Thursday “admonished” Republican South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham for soliciting campaign donations on behalf of then-Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker in the Capitol.
The complaint stemmed from Graham’s Nov. 30 interview with Fox News’ Sandra Smith and John Roberts. During the appearance, Graham repeatedly urged viewers to donate to Walker’s campaign through the website teamherschel.com. The senator, who served as a prominent surrogate for Walker’s 2022 campaign, later reported himself to the Ethics Committee, according to a March 23 letter from Chairman Chris Coons of Delaware and Vice Chairman James Lankford of Oklahoma.
“The specific prohibition on campaign solicitation in federal buildings and the restrictions on the use of official resources for campaign activity have been consistent and clear throughout your years of Senate service, and the Committee is confident the Senate community understands this standard and its rationale,” Coons and Lankford wrote. “The public must feel confident that Members use public resources only for official actions in the best interests of the United States, not for partisan political activity.”
In a letter to Sen. Lindsey Graham, the bipartisan Senate Ethics Committee admonished him for soliciting campaign contributions five times during a media interview in the Russell Senate office building. It is against Senate rules to solicit campaign donations on Capitol grounds pic.twitter.com/amc5ipcosw
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) March 23, 2023
Graham apologized for the violation in a statement. (RELATED: Democrat Rep Spends More Campaign Dollars At Swanky Golf Club Amid Ethics Probe)
“It was a mistake. I take responsibility. I will try to do better in the future,” he said.
The committee noted Graham violated the same rule in 2020, when he was running for reelection. Democrat Jaime Harrison out-raised Graham in that race by nearly $25 million, but the latter still won by double-digit points.