Graham: Trump mistook old video of North Korea for live missile launch

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamIf you don't think illegal immigrants are voting for president, think again Graham challenges Dems to walk the walk on impeachment Hillicon Valley: House Dems subpoena full Mueller report | DOJ pushes back at 'premature' subpoena | Dems reject offer to view report with fewer redactions | Trump camp runs Facebook ads about Mueller report | Uber gets B for self-driving cars MORE (R-S.C.) says in a new interview that President TrumpDonald John TrumpRussia's election interference is a problem for the GOP Pence to pitch trade deal during trip to Michigan: report Iran oil minister: US made 'bad mistake' in ending sanctions waivers MORE once thought during one of their meetings that archived footage of North Korean missile launches was happening in real time and became briefly concerned.

In an interview with the Washington Post published on Friday, Graham recalled a meeting he had with Trump shortly after he was elected. Graham said he and the president sat beside a television tuned to Fox News and had lunch with former chief of staff Reince PriebusReinhold (Reince) Richard PriebusHouse Judiciary chairman subpoenas former White House lawyer McGahn Trump snapped at McMaster for taking notes during meeting: report The Memo: Mueller's depictions will fuel Trump angst MORE and national security adviser H.R. McMaster.

During the meeting, Graham recalled, Trump wanted to discuss national security.


Graham told Trump what he saw as his two biggest concerns with the topic, Iran and North Korea. At that point, Graham recalled the television began showing old footage of North Korean missile launches.

Graham said Trump grew worried after watching the footage, as he was under the impression the launches were happening in real time.

“That’s old footage, old footage!” Graham recalled telling Trump at the time, laughing.

Graham, who was once one the president’s most vocal Republican critics, also touched on his relationship with Trump during the interview and his late friend Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainIf you don't think illegal immigrants are voting for president, think again 10 factors making Russia election interference the most enduring scandal of the Obama era Earth Day founder's daughter: Most Republican leaders believe in climate change in private MORE’s (R-Ariz.) reluctance to embrace him. 

Graham said McCain wasn’t pleased when Graham began to warm up to Trump after the 2016 presidential election.

“Why do you play golf with him?” Graham recalled McCain asking him. “I told him I hope you understand. ... The best place to talk to him is in his world.”