Graham explodes at Dems, rips proceedings as 'unethical sham'

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamActing Defense chief calls Graham an 'ally' after tense exchange Five takeaways from McCabe’s allegations against Trump FBI’s top lawyer believed Hillary Clinton should face charges, but was talked out of it MORE (R-S.C.) grew visibly angry and yelled at Sen. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinOvernight Energy: Trump ends talks with California on car emissions | Dems face tough vote on Green New Deal | Climate PAC backing Inslee in possible 2020 run Dems face tough vote on Green New Deal Durbin: Trump pressuring acting AG in Cohen probe is 'no surprise' MORE (Ill.) and other committee Democrats in a fiery exchange during Thursday’s hearing, accusing them of trying to destroy Brett Kavanaugh’s life.

“If you wanted a FBI investigation into Brett Kavanaugh, you could have come to us," Graham said after asking Kavanaugh if he knew Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinFeinstein says she thinks Biden will run after meeting with him Trump judicial nominee Neomi Rao seeks to clarify past remarks on date rape Bottom Line MORE's (D-Calif.) staff had the allegation of sexual assault against him for more than 20 days.


"What you want to do is destroy this guy’s life, hold this seat open and hope you win in 2020. You’ve said that not me,” Graham yelled, his face turning red.

“You’ve got nothing to apologize for,” he said, turning to Kavanaugh. “When you see [Supreme Court justices] Sotomayor and Kagan, tell them that Lindsey said hello, ‘cause I voted for them."

Turning back to the Durbin and Feinstein, Graham added, “I would never do to them what you do to this guy.” 

Graham called the fight over Kavanaugh’s confirmation the most "unethical sham" he’s seen since he’s 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,” he said.

Turning to his GOP colleagues, Graham vowed: "If you vote 'no' you're legitimizing the most despicable thing I have seen in my time in politics."

The South Carolina Republican also said he hopes Democrats never regain control of the Senate.

“Boy, you all want power, God, I hope you never get it,” he said. “I hope the American people can see through this sham. That you knew about it and you held it."

Graham asked Kavanaugh if he considers the confirmation process to be like a job interview and if he’d say he’s been through hell.

Kavanaugh said he’s been through hell and then some.

“This is not a job interview. This is hell,” Graham said. “This is going to destroy the ability of good people to come forward because of this crap.”

Graham said Kavanaugh has been around professional women all his life and not a single accusation has come out against him until now.

“You’re supposed to be Bill Cosby when you’re a junior and senior in high school and all of a sudden you’ve gotten over it,” he said, referring to the famous TV actor who was recently sentenced to three to 10 years in prison for sexually assaulting women.

"It’s my understanding that if you drug women and rape them for two years in high school you probably don’t stop,” Graham said.