Graham implores Trump to take 'decisive action' against Iran

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden meets with lawmakers amid domestic agenda panic The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - House Democrats plagued by Biden agenda troubles Graham tries to help Trump and McConnell bury the hatchet MORE (R-S.C.) on Tuesday urged President TrumpDonald TrumpUkraine's president compares UN to 'a retired superhero' Collins to endorse LePage in Maine governor comeback bid Heller won't say if Biden won election MORE to take "decisive action" against Iran after attacks on Saudi oil facilities the U.S. thinks Tehran likely was responsible for.

"The problems with Iran only get worse over time so it is imperative we take decisive action to deter further aggression by the Ayatollah and his henchman," Graham tweeted.

The South Carolina lawmaker pointed to Trump's response when Iran shot down a U.S. military drone in June as a case of not acting decisively enough.


"The measured response by President @realDonaldTrump regarding the shooting down of an American drone was clearly seen by the Iranian regime as a sign of weakness," he said.

Trump approved airstrikes against Iran following the drone incident but said he called them off at the last minute after being told it would lead to more than 100 casualties, saying the U.S. had been “cocked and loaded” to retaliate. 

The Trump administration has indicated it blames Iran for the attacks on two Saudi oil sites but is still assessing the evidence.

Tehran has denied involvement in the attacks, while Yemen's Houthi rebels have claimed responsibility for the strikes and threatened further hits on Saudi oil facilities.

The Saudi-led military coalition said Monday that preliminary evidence indicates the weapons used in the attack were Iranian and that the strikes did not originate from Yemen.

Trump's initial reaction to the attacks on Twitter was to say the U.S. was "locked and loaded."

On Monday, the president seemed to back down from that initial stance, saying that "we’d certainly like to avoid" a potential military conflict with Iran.

Graham has advocated for strong retaliation against Iran. On Saturday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee member said the U.S. should consider striking Iranian oil refineries in response to the attacks in Saudi Arabia.