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Public Statements

CBS "Face the Nation" - Transcript

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BOB SCHIEFFER: Now Lindsey Graham, you are known as a very close friend of Senator John McCain. You were one of his top advisors during the presidential campaign. What about that?

SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-South Carolina): Well, I think John is reacting to an agenda that he thinks has really been overreaching now. It is different. The Senate is different now. But to your point about bipartisanship after the election, I predict there'll be a good bit of it. There'll be a bipartisan effort to extend the Bush tax cuts and not let them expire. Two thousand and twelve and 2014 Democrats in swing states are going to get the message from independent voters to come to the middle. So I think we're going to have some bipartisanship when it comes to replacing the health care bill with a more moderate approach. You'll see some Democrats and Republicans working early on to try to moderate things as Liz said. But Senate has
changed. No doubt about it.

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SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Well, I think she's obviously toying with the idea. Let me tell you when she came into South Carolina and endorsed Nicky Haley, it-- it took her from fourth place to first place. She's had a lot of power in these primaries. People on our side like Sarah. She talks in a way they can understand. But at the end of the day, why are we talking the way
we're talking two weeks from an election? You know, Howard Dean is trying to explain the health care bill as moderate. The-- the best way to evaluate the health care bill is that no Democrat is talking about it. The Democrats who are talking about it are talking about that I voted against it. The West Virginia democratic candidate for Senate just shot a hole literally in
the cap-and-trade bill. So what you see here is a reaction to an agenda that started out centrist during the 2008 campaign and became a left ditch agenda during the last two years. And the Tea Party has risen up speaking against excessive government, but the American public is in the right center of the road. They're not in the right ditch or the left ditch. So our Tea Party
friends have done us a favor. But if we talk about doing away with Social Security as part of our agenda then we're going to lose the public. The public is in the middle of the road, right of center. Sarah Palin could do well if that's where she-- she aligns herself with. But if you get too far right or too-- too far left you're going to lose the American people.

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BOB SCHIEFFER: Lindsey Graham. Is it about Barack Obama, the economy, what is it about?

SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Well, I don't think it's about everybody becoming a Republican in the last two years. I do believe it's the rejection of an agenda that scares people. The health care bill, the stimulus package, the financial regulation, all the spending was not what people expected from this President. He turned his agenda over to the most liberal people in the House
and two weeks before the campaign nobody's running for the health care bill. Most Democrats in swing states are running against Nancy Pelosi and against the Obama takeover of most of society. So this is a rejection of an overreach of governing from the left ditch. They had a chance to put us out of business, Bob. If he had to campaign-- govern like he campaigned this
would be a different election cycle. It's about an overreach and we have to guard against it on our watch if we do take over.

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