Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) had some frank words for constituents who attended a town hall meeting Monday in Greenville: "chill out."
According to The State, the centrist Republican lawmaker used the slang phrase repeatedly in response to combative and often accusatory comments made by audience members, most of whom represented far-right viewpoints. Attendees shouted, jeered, and waved anti-government signs at the senator throughout the meeting, but Graham was unperturbed. After explaining that bipartisan compromise is a crucial part of the political process, Graham finished by saying, "If you don't like it, you can leave."
Some attendees did leave, but the majority stayed for the entire 90 minute meeting.
"We're not going to be the party of angry white guys," Graham told the irate, overwhelmingly Caucasian crowd, apparently ignoring the obvious irony of his directive.
Despite being on the defensive much of the time, Graham held his ground on the issues, defending his conservative credentials as well as his support for the climate change bill. When asked about the view held by some Libertarians that President Bush committed war crimes, Graham didn't mince words, calling the view "nuts." His response garnered shouts and boos.