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Graham: Media 'a pain in the ass' but 'not the enemy of the people'
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) disagrees with President Trump's frequent slams against the media, telling reporters Monday that "sometimes you can be a pain in the ass, but you're not the enemy of the people."
The comments by the former 2016 presidential candidate come after several close to the president, including White House counselor Kellyanne Conway and daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump, have also stated the media isn't the enemy of the people - as the president has contended on Twitter and at rallies recently.
"I think the press in America is a check and balance on power," Graham said Monday afternoon in South Carolina. "I think sometimes you get tribal like the rest of the country. Sometimes you can be a pain in the ass, but you're not the enemy of the people. As a matter of fact, without a free press, I wouldn't want to live in that country."
"But you can be a pain in the ass," he reiterated while laughing. "But you're supposed to be."
The president repeated his view of the press on Sunday morning, tweeting to his 53.5 million followers that he is "providing a great service" by explaining to Americans that the "fake news" media is the enemy of the people, adding that the Fourth Estate "can cause war" without specifying what he meant.
Graham also said Monday he is "completely supportive" of the president's decision to reimpose "hard-hitting sanctions" on Iran, which he described as a "murderous ... regime."