Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham faced an onslaught of boos as he stumped for former President Donald Trump at a rally in his home state of South Carolina Saturday, with supporters giving him a thumbs down as he left the stage.
‘Let me tell you how you win an election, folks,’ Graham told the crowd of Trump supporters in Pickens, South Carolina. ‘You get people together that don’t agree all of the time to agree on the most important things.’
‘My hope is we can bring this party together ’cause he’s gonna be our nominee,’ Graham continued amid a stream of soft booing from many in attendance. ‘He will be the nominee of the Republican Party, and let me tell you what’s at stake. If they win in 2024, they’re gonna pack the Supreme Court. So we need to get off our butts and make sure Donald Trump wins. If they win in 2024… Puerto Rico and D.C. will be states. Four Democrats for the rest of our lifetime. They’ll abolish the electoral college, they will turn this nation upside down.’
‘There’s one person running for president as a Republican that has the ability to change this country. It is Donald J. Trump. He did it once, he can do it again,’ he said. ‘I’m gonna help him all over this country, and folks, I am from South Carolina. He is gonna win South Carolina. This is the pathway to the presidency. God bless you all. God bless President Trump. God bless America.’
Immediately after his remarks, Graham paced to the left of the stage and exited among a roaring crowd of disgruntled Trump supporters who booed at the senator and gave him a thumbs down.
Graham, who spoke for about five minutes at the rally, was also booed when first took stage.
Once at the podium, Graham paused as the booing drowned out what he had to say.
‘Welcome to Pickens. … Thanks a bunch,’ he said. ‘Well, you wanna find something in common?’
As the booing continued, Graham told the crowd: ‘Calm down for just a second. I think you’ll like this. Pickens County has more Medal of Honor winners per capita than any place in the nation. I was born in this county. I live 15 miles down the road.’
‘This is a place where people pay the taxes, fight the wars and tell you what they believe,’ Graham said over the booing. ‘How many of you believe that Donald Trump was a great president?’
The crowd cheered at Graham’s remarks about Trump, but went right back to shouting down the senator and his remarks.
‘Without Donald Trump, there are no Donald Trump policies,’ Graham said. ‘He did something nobody else could do.’
Taking the stage a short time after Graham’s comments, Trump attempted to rally support for the senator, telling his supporters, ‘We’re gonna love him.’
Amid additional booing from the crowd, Trump said, ‘I know, it’s half-and-half. But when I need some of those liberal votes, he’s always there to help me get ’em, okay?’
‘We got some pretty liberal people, but he’s good,’ Trump added of Graham. ‘We know the good ones. We know the bad ones, too.’
Trump referenced Graham at a later point in the rally and was met with another round of booing. ‘I’m gonna have to work on these people,’ Trump said. He also offered to campaign for Graham when he is up for re-election.
Graham, who’s represented South Carolina in the U.S. Senate since 2003, has faced criticism from Trump supporters in recent years for his positions on a number of issues.
In 2021, as he waited to board a flight from the Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C., Graham was swarmed by roughly a dozen people who called him a ‘traitor’ over his comments about Trump following the 2020 presidential election.
‘You know it was rigged,’ the individuals shouted to Graham at the time.
Graham’s position on the Russia-Ukraine war, which has been ongoing for well over a year, has also not been popular among Trump supporters and hardcore conservatives.
An ardent supporter of Ukraine’s defensive efforts, Graham traveled with Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut to Kyiv last summer.
During the meeting on the 134th day of the war, Zelenskyy, according to his office, ‘called on senators to back the decision on providing Ukraine with modern air defense systems.’
‘First of all, we appeal to you so that the Congress supports Ukraine in the matter of supplying modern air defense systems,’ Zelenskyy said. ‘We must ensure such a level of sky security that our people are not afraid to live in Ukraine.’
Fox News’ Greg Norman contributed to this report.