South Carolina Democrat Jaime Harrison, who is challenging Sen. (R) in 2020, said Wednesday he's raised $150,000 since Graham the day before publicly agreed with calling the House’s impeachment investigation a “lynching.”
“Our campaign is powered by everyday people who know that Lindsey Graham doesn’t represent them and can’t be trusted. In the hours after Graham compared investigating political corruption to a ‘lynching,’ contributions to support Jaime started pouring in. South Carolinians believe in Jaime’s promise to bring hope and character back to our politics — and they’re rejecting Lindsey Graham,” Harrison campaign manager Zack Carroll said in a statement.
Harrison slammed Graham Tuesday over his remarks agreeing with Trump that the House’s investigation into the president’s dealings with Ukraine amounted to a “lynching,” suggesting he is ignoring South Carolina’s racial past.
"For three generations in South Carolina, we have understood the evil history of lynching in our state. We have all — Democrats, Republicans, Independents — agreed it will not define who we are as South Carolinians anymore," Harrison said in a statement. “We put the shadow of lynching behind us, but now Lindsey Graham is casting that shadow across South Carolina and our nation to defend Donald Trump.”
Harrison also invited Graham to join him at this week’s groundbreaking of the International African American Museum in Charleston.
Trump sparked a firestorm in Washington Tuesday when he compared the impeachment investigation to a lynching. While the president faced bipartisan criticism that he was overlooking the racial history behind lynchings, Graham defended Trump’s remarks, saying the House investigation is “un-American.”
“This is a lynching in every sense. This is un-American,” Graham told reporters. “I’ve never seen a situation in my lifetime as a lawyer where somebody is accused of a major misconduct who cannot confront the accuser, call witnesses on their behalf and have the discussion in the light of day so the public can judge.”
Harrison is seeking to make Graham’s proximity to the White House a chief issue in his Senate bid as he works to cast himself as a candidate focused on local issues.
“Here’s a guy who will say anything to stay in office. Lindsey Graham can’t lead us in any direction, because he traded his moral compass for petty political gain,” he said in his announcement video, adding that the senator’s shift from vocally opposing Trump during the 2016 election to supporting him was "comical."
Harrison, who served as the first black chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party, faces an uphill battle in unseating Graham in the deeply Republican Palmetto State. Trump carried South Carolina by over 14 points in 2016, and the Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the race as "Solid Republican."