Joe Biden calls Lindsey Graham ‘a personal disappointment’ for refusing to acknowledge his victory in the 2020 election

Mr Biden says he can work with Republicans once Mr Trump leaves office

Graig Graziosi
Friday 18 December 2020 17:16
Biden calls Lindsey Graham a 'personal disappointment'
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Joe Biden called Sen. Lindsey Graham a "personal disappointment" during an interview on The Late Show with Steven Colbert.  

Mr Colbert asked the president-elect if he took Congressional Republicans' refusal to publicly acknowledge his electoral victory as a personal slight. 

Though Mr Biden initially took the question in stride, he became visibly upset when Mr Colbert asked about Sen. Lindsey Graham.  

"Lindsey Graham, a friend of yours. He has said things about you that are nicer than anything anyone's said about me," Mr Colbert said. "Do you think you guys can patch it up and work together?"  

After a moment of thought, Mr Biden crossed his arms and expressed his disappointment with Mr Graham.  

"Lindsey's been a personal disappointment, because I was a personal friend of his," Mr Biden said.  

Mr Graham is Donald Trump loyalist and has not only denied the results of the election but, according to a Republican official in Georgia, has actively worked to throw the election for Mr Biden.  

According to Georgia's Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Mr Graham tried to pressure him to throw out legally cast mail-in ballots using a signature match technicality. If true, Mr Graham would have been committing a felony for attempting to interfere with the results of a national election.  

Mr Graham has denied any wrongdoing.  

Other than the case of Mr Graham, Mr Biden appeared to take Republican leaders denying the results of a fair and legal election in his stride. He empathised with the Republicans, claiming they were in a "tough spot".  

"No, look, they're in a tough spot. I know everyone says 'well they should just step up' ... a number of them sent messages to me four weeks ago – 'give me time Joe, give me some time.' It's fine by me. It's fine by me," Mr Biden said. "We won! We won Georgia three times."  

Mr Colbert asked if Mr Biden "understood" the spot the Republicans were in, and he said "I do".  

He told Mr Colbert that he believes that once Mr Trump is out of office, the president's influence over the Republican party will fade, which will allow Republicans the leeway to work with him. 

"But look, I don't think … I think I can work with Republican leadership in the House and the Senate, I think we can get things done, and I think once this president is no longer in office, I think you're going to see his impact on the body politic fade, and a lot of these Republicans are going to feel they have much more room to run and cooperate," Mr Biden said.  

If Democratic candidates do not unseat incumbent Republican senators in Georgia during next month's run-off elections, then the Senate will remain in Republican control. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will still be in charge of the senate, just as he was during Barack Obama's administration. 

Mr McConnell made it his goal to obstruct every initiative Mr Obama and the Democrats made, and has continued to be an obstructionist throughout the Trump administration. Mr Biden did not immediately make clear why he believes Mr McConnell will behave any differently under his administration, assuming the Republican incumbents are victorious in Georgia.

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