According to media reports Friday, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham lambasted his Republican Party’s presidential front-runners Thursday, telling reporters at the Capitol that nominating Donald Trump or Ted Cruz could prove fatal for his party.
“It’s like being shot or poisoned. What does it really matter?” Graham said.
Graham, who ended his bid for the GOP nomination in December, has since endorsed Jeb Bush, reports USA Today.
On Thursday, he laid out his criticisms of the candidates left in what he called “an election cycle that is beyond strange.”
Surveying the Democratic field, Graham called Bernie Sanders “by far the most liberal person” to seriously run for president and Hillary Clinton “dishonest”.
He predicted Trump’s unpreparedness and Cruz’ divisiveness, combined with both candidates’ rigid stances on issues such as immigration, would ensure either man a defeat by Clinton in a general election.
“Here’s my take: Dishonest, which is Hillary Clinton in the eyes of the American people, beats crazy. I think Donald Trump’s domestic and foreign policy is gibberish.
I think Ted Cruz has a reputation of being ideological to a fault, and that when it comes to problem solving, he will have a very difficult time proving that he is a problem solver.”
Anyone but Cruz or Trump would prove better, Graham stressed.
“So let’s just pick somebody out of the phone book if we have to,” he said. “We can win this election unless we lose it.”
Graham did defend Cruz’s eligibility, calling the ongoing “birther” feud between Cruz and front-runner Donald Trump a meaningless distraction.
“I think it’s taken us away from how to defend the nation,” he said. “Ted Cruz is born in Canada – I have no doubt he’s eligible to run for president of the United States. I have no doubt that he would be an ideologue in the eyes of most Americans.”