Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) vowed that, if elected president, he would use the military to force Congress to reverse cuts to federal defense spending, Vox reported.
“I would literally use the military to keep them in if I had to,” Graham said at an event in New Hamphsire over the weekend. “We’re not leaving town until we restore these defense cuts. We are not leaving town until we restore the intel cuts.”
The remark was first posted online by journalist Ron Noyes at BenSwann.com. Noyes wrote that, when reached for comment, a spokesperson from Graham’s office said via email, “Due to the large volume of mail I receive, I regret that I am only able to respond personally to inquiries from South Carolinians.”
Vox noted that, while Senate leadership is legally authorized to employ Capitol police to assure a quorum, Graham’s apparent idea stretches far beyond that.
“What Lindsey Graham is proposing is to physically force members of Congress to vote how he commands,” Amanda Taub wrote. “His plan violates constitutional separation of powers in just about the most extreme way imaginable, by forcing the executive branch’s will on the legislature. And it is a pretty safe bet that Senate rules do not grant the president authority to have the 101st Airborne Division occupy the Capitol until Congress votes the way he wants.”
Graham made the remarks at the first “Politics and Pie” forum hosted by the Concord City Republican Committee. He also chose not to attend this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), and subsequntly gained just .1 percent of the vote in the conference’s annual straw poll.
Listen to Graham’s remarks, as posted by Noyes, below.