Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who was widely supported by much of former President Donald Trump’s base, took a hit on the popularity front in the wake of the 2020 election and the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, as Graham showed some opposition to Trump on those occasions.
However, according to the Washington Examiner, at the recent Michigan Republican Party’s leadership conference, Graham told the crowd that he hopes Trump will run for the presidency in 2024, despite taking pointed jabs from the 45th president just days before in a statement.
“I don’t think Trump is listening,” Graham said at the conference. “He might be. I hope President Trump runs again.”
Trump rips Graham
In the wake of several of the revelations out of the book Peril, written by journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, Trump took aim at Graham over the past week, slamming him for what the book said about his position on Trump’s claims that the 2020 election was rigged.
In the book, it was mentioned that Graham, along with Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), remained unconvinced of Trump’s claims at the time that 2020 election was rigged in Biden’s favor.
It was also noted that Graham was among several otherwise Trump-allied congressmen who didn’t object to the certification results in a number of key battleground states — something that Trump clearly hasn’t forgotten about.
“Mike Lee, Lindsey Graham and all of the other Republicans who were unwilling to fight for the presidency of the United States, which would have included at least an additional four Republican Senators, two in Georgia, one in Michigan, one in Arizona, are letting the Democrats get away with the greatest election hoax in history — a total con job,” Trump’s statement read.
In Graham’s address at the leadership conference, he didn’t make mention of Trump’s statement, opting instead to assure Michigan Republicans that he’s 100% team Trump.
Understandably, given some of his past statements about Trump which proved extremely unpopular with Trump’s base of millions of Americans, Graham said he’s asked frequently what happened and what his status is with the 45th president.
“People ask me, ‘What happened with you and Trump?'” Graham told the GOP conference attendees. “I say we found common ground. I’ve come to like him, and he likes him.”
Graham added that he believes Trump can be a “handful” at times, encouraging the former president to “tone it down a notch.”
Regardless, it appears as if Graham is doing his best to get back in the good graces of the former president, as those in the Republican Party who are seen as anti-Trumpers have suffered greatly in the polls and as a result, stand much less chance of winning reelections.