[image-1]It would be hard to miss the fury with which the radio right has been attacking Lindsey Graham for his impassioned support for the failed immigration reforms (Sen. Grahamnesty is about as clever as they come). There’s been a flurry of speculation about who could challenge Graham. But with the GOP’s best possible horse (alleged coke addict and friendly distributor Thomas Ravenel) out of the race, I’d say the senator is on easy street.
Washington website Politico ran a story on Lindsey, noting opposition to his immigration position, but casting doubt to any challengers.
While some hard-core conservatives are lobbying online for someone to step forward to challenge Graham, their candidate recruitment drive has fallen short. That causes some to question whether Graham really is trouble with the GOP’s most faithful.
“If Lindsey Graham were as vulnerable as his critics say he is, they’d be lining up to run against him,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres of Washington. “So far, there have been zero. Zilch.”
Don’t believe us? How about Sen. Jim DeMint, whose support would be essential to any attempt to unseat Graham. In a letter to the Times and Democrat on Thursday, DeMint all but endorsed Graham in ’08.
Lindsey and I have worked closely together in Congress for over eight years and we make a good team for South Carolina. Both of us have been willing to take unpopular stands when we thought we were right, and both of us have gone against the president when we thought he was wrong. We may have different views on how to improve our immigration system, but I have a deep respect for the hard work, conviction and passion Sen. Graham brings to policy debates. I’m proud to work alongside Lindsey; he’s a trusted friend and a true asset to South Carolina and the nation.
Does this mean that Lindsey won’t see a GOP challenger? No. I’m sure there’s some far-right crazy with higher aspirations than his IQ. But the big dogs who could truly challenge Graham won’t be stepping into the ring come November.