Senate Republicans and the White House aren’t “anywhere close to a deal” on border security policies, and that’s leaving the United States open to attack, Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday.
“Jihadist groups want to attack us because we’re helping Israel,” the South Carolina Republican said on NBC News’s “Meet the Press.” “I’ve never been more worried about a 9/11 than I am right now and our border has been obliterated. We’re not going to give in on some band-aid fix.”
Graham noted that the Senate has been speaking with the White House since September about the border, and just five days ago, “they finally sat at this table.”
“I think this will go into next year,” he said. “I’ve been talking to the people at the table. The White House got engaged five days ago. They sent over a supplemental with border security provisions that did nothing to change policy.”
Meanwhile, FBI Director Christopher Wray has said that he has never seen more threats to the homeland than he does now, Graham said.
“The border has been obliterated since January 2021 until now,” he said. “We’ve had 6 million people come to date. There are 3.6 million on schedule to come this year alone. The policy choices that the Biden administration has made the border a dangerous place to come to.”
Graham said he does agree with those who say if the United States doesn’t help Ukraine, “the world can fall into chaos and [Vladimir] Putin would keep going,” but at the same time, he said, “You should have the same energy and vigor to fix a broken border. “
Meanwhile, Biden chose to undo former President Donald Trump’s border policies and as a result “created a nightmare.”
Democrats are also saying that the Senate Republicans’ proposals would effectively shut down the border to families who are seeking asylum, but Graham disagreed.
“Under the Biden administration the asylum system has become a joke,” said Graham. “Ninety percent of the people who claim asylum are denied, so they’re coming here for economic opportunity and not fleeing oppression. Under international law you’re supposed to apply for asylum if you’re in an unsafe country.”
But Biden is choosing to ignore the law, even though most of those coming across the border are not people running for their lives, said Graham.
“They’re running because the border is wide open,” he said. “They think if they get here and make an asylum claim they’d never leave.”
Biden’s foreign aid package, except for the border provisions, is “pretty robust,” Graham conceded.
“The package to help Israel, I’m 100% for,” he said. “The package sent over to help Taiwan, count me in. The border provision sent over in September is a joke.”
However, the senator said that he does agree with how the Biden administration is handling the crisis in Israel.
“The Biden administration went to Saudi Arabia,” said Graham. “Normalizing relationships between Saudi Arabia and Israel is a big prize. Iran’s biggest fear is if the Arabs reconcile with Israelis, [that will] give Israel the time and space to destroy Hamas and that’s non-negotiable, but we need to think about the day after. “
Meanwhile, Graham said he believes the Saudis will demand a two-state solution to recognize Israel while the Israelis will demand security buffers that differ from the ones they had.
Graham also on Sunday talked about the impeachment inquiry into Biden, and said he hasn’t been paying “that much attention to it.”
“They have to prove that Biden financially benefited from Hunter Biden’s [actions],” he said.
“If there was a smoking gun we’d be talking about it….the idea that Joe Biden knew anything about the business dealings is falling apart,” said Graham. “I’m not worried about impeaching the president. You know what I’m worried about? Helping the president bring the Mideast to a better spot.”
He also said he’s not worried about the language Trump has used about immigration.
“I could care less what language people use as long as we get it right,” he said. “I believe in legal immigration. I have no animosity to people trying to come to our country. I’ve had animosity against terrorists and drug dealers, but I understand why people want to come to America, but we have chaos and we need to create order.”
Sandy Fitzgerald | firstname.lastname@example.org
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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