Just a few short months ago, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was the one of the few Republicans who didn’t appear to be utterly subservient to President Donald Trump. Graham often criticized Trump and even warned it would be “the beginning of the end” of Trump’s presidency if he fired Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
But those days are long gone.
During the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh last year, Graham exploded with rage, accusing those opposed to Kavanaugh of being unethical:
“When you see Sotomayor and Kagan, tell them that Lindsey said hello because I voted for them. I would never do to them what you’ve done to this guy. This is the most unethical sham since I’ve been in politics! And if you really wanted to know the truth, you sure as hell wouldn’t have done what you’ve done to this guy!”
What in the hell happened to Lindsey Graham? How did he go from a rare voice of reason to an attack dog for the Trump administration?
Would it surprise you to learn it’s about money?
As Ruth May first reported for the Dallas Morning News:
“During the 2015-2016 election season, Ukrainian-born billionaire Leonard ‘Len’ Blavatnik contributed $6.35 million to leading Republican candidates and incumbent senators.
“Other high dollar recipients of funding from Blavatnik were PACS representing Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker at $1.1 million, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham at $800,000, Ohio Governor John Kasich at $250,000 and Arizona Senator John McCain at $200,000.”
While he was at it, Blavatnik also made sure and donated a cool $1 million to the Trump Inaugural Committee.
Blavatnik, it just so happens, has numerous connections to Russian, Russian oligarchs, and Russian President Vladimir Putin:
“Blavatnik’s relationships with Russian oligarchs close to Putin, particularly Oleg Deripaska, should be worrisome for Trump and the six GOP leaders who took Blavatnik’s money during the 2016 presidential campaign.”
Keep in mind that Graham’s email account was also hacked. We don’t know what exactly was in those emails, but it’s safe to say it must have been pretty juicy to make the South Carolina senator go from anti-Trumper to one of the most staunch defenders of the president.
Some have said Graham wants to be the next attorney general. That way, he could protect Trump and also keep his own secrets under wraps. But the money trail remains, and it suggests that Senator Graham is just as compromised as Donald Trump himself.