Omar Fuels Conspiracy Theory: Graham Is 'Compromised!'

Ilhan Omar / Getty Images
Ilhan Omar / Getty Images
January 16, 2019

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) accused a Republican lawmaker without evidence of being "compromised" Tuesday.

In a tweet from her verified account Tuesday night, Omar shared a 2015 video of then-presidential candidate Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) criticizing Donald Trump.



In the video, Graham slammed then-candidate Trump for his character and views. At the time, the senator and Trump were dueling for the 2016 Republican nomination. Since Trump's election, Graham has worked closely with the president on a range of issues, and has generally been supportive of his agenda, to the puzzlement of many in the media.

Omar's unsubstantiated accusation came hours after MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle implied that Trump has kompromat on South Carolina's senior senator. During a panel discussion on the relationship between the two, Ruhle jumped in with the suggestion. "It could be that Donald Trump or somebody knows something pretty extreme about Lindsey Graham," Ruhle said before ending the segment. "We’re gonna have to leave it there," she concluded.

The Washington Free Beacon reported Tuesday that Ruhle's accusation, and now Omar's, follow an unsourced allegation by Jon Cooper, a super PAC Democratic official. He claimed Graham was "being blackmailed by the Russians" over "some pretty serious sexual kink."

To date, the MSNBC anchor, Democratic fundraiser, and elected official have yet to produce any evidence for the smear.

Philip Klein, executive editor of the Washington Examiner, wrote an editorial Tuesday titled "It doesn't take a crazy conspiracy theory to explain why Lindsey Graham is supporting Donald Trump." In it, Klein offered that Graham's relationship with Trump can be explained by the fact he "is running for reelection in 2020 in a state where Trump's approval rating is 83 percent among Republicans."

Trump and Graham have worked together to support two Supreme Court justices, pass criminal justice reform, and pass a number of other legislative measures. However, they have also broken on a number of issues, including Trump's decision in December to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria. The two have managed to work through those disagreements, albeit with an occasional barbed tweet.

As of press time, Omar's original tweet remained posted without supporting evidence.