November 10th, 2013
10:58 AM ET
5 months ago

Graham to keep holds on Obama nominees

Washington (CNN) - Sen. Lindsey Graham vowed on Sunday that he would continue to block President Barack Obama's nominations until Congress hears from Benghazi survivors.

The South Carolina lawmaker told CNN's Candy Crowley on "State of the Union" that he will place holds on any nomination put forth by the administration unless it makes available five survivors of the September 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya, who have been interviewed by State Department investigators but remain out of Congress' reach.


"I've been trying for a year to get these interviews without holds," Graham said.

Graham scoffed at any notion his maneuver amounts to political grandstanding, portraying his actions as a last resort and couching them as part of "trying to perform oversight."

"I don't want to hold anybody. All I want to do is talk to the survivors," Graham insisted. "I'm not trying to prosecute a crime."

Graham announced his intention to hold all of Obama’s nominations the day after CBS's "60 Minutes" aired a controversial report on the attacks. The newsmagazine has since pulled its report, saying that its eyewitness, a British contractor stationed in Libya, lied to reporter Lara Logan about what he saw on the ground.

When pressed by Crowley about whether the debunking of the piece would impact his stance, Graham told her it wouldn’t.
"I never asked for the British contractor. I didn't know he existed," Graham said.

soundoff (320 Responses)
  1. kvining

    Actually governing this country seems more than the GOP can handle. I simply don't see how this "scandal" impacts my day to day life. I do see how the GOP's obstruction of everything President Blackenstein proposes does. Just more bull Shiite.

    November 10, 2013 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  2. J. Olver

    And let's have hearings on 9/11 too. Seems the Bush administration was not paying attention to their intelligence services for that one. There have been many attacks on American facilities over the years and hindsight can always see a way that they could have been prevented. The GOP's persistence in this matter is purely political. Mrs. Clinton has a lot of supporters and the right will do anything to weaken her political strength.

    November 10, 2013 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  3. jojo

    @tampa tin – I thought he was trying to help americans. Especially the four americans that died because of the incompetence of Obama and the democrats.

    November 10, 2013 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. Edwin

    So Graham wants this because of the false CBS report – the one CBS formally apologized for? That is even dumber than I thought.

    Regardless, he is holding up necessary business in order to push an unrelated agenda. The Benghazi survivors may indeed have important things to say – but they are not related to the appointments he is blocking in any way. He is creating obstruction and hampering the function of the government, and he is showing why appointments should not be subject to filibuster laws,

    In July, several key Senators PROMISED not to do this – not to hold up appointments for any reason other than the appointee's qualification. Apparently the promise was not worth as much as the breath they used to say it. The ONLY solution that works is to abolish filibusters on such appointments altogether – the so-called nuclear option, albeit on a small scale. Graham knows he is pushing Reid into that position.

    And perhaps that is his goal – to get a democrat to do it, so when republicans are next in power they can use it to appoint ultra-conservatives to positions. If so, he is even more political and even less a loyal American than it appears.

    November 10, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  5. just me

    Ok, fine. Just put a hold on all federal projects in South Carolina and let him explain to his state why that's happening. Don't negotiate with idiots, play hardball.

    November 10, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  6. SuZieCoyote

    We are sick of you and your obstructionist ways, Graham.

    November 10, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  7. VEW2012

    Now, that we know that much of Graham's hype over Benghazi was built around the 60 Minute untruthful version of the course of events, he now doesn't want to hear from that source anymore. Doesn't he understand that his whole case for a conspiracy plot just took a walk.

    November 10, 2013 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  8. Thaddius

    Repubs are the Whigs of the 21st century

    November 10, 2013 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  9. gee

    I thought Graham had more sense than a tea leaf.

    November 10, 2013 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  10. MaryM

    Bye Bye Graham . Gallup poll 74% DISAPPROVAL RATING for Republicans in Congress.

    November 10, 2013 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Wasting taxpayers money on issues nobody cares about. I'm glad he does not represent my State, we have enough of his kind already.

    November 10, 2013 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  12. mike

    Hmm...I thought 'not backing down on Benghazi' meant someone was pursuing the al Qaeda perps. I see this is just more GOP Obama derangement.

    November 10, 2013 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    I'm so tire of theses racist people. They are destroying the US.

    November 10, 2013 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  14. Chris

    I suggest we take the old phrase "beating a dead horse" and replace it with the new phrase "Republicans investigating Benghazi" – because it means the exact same thing.

    November 10, 2013 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  15. NameGoose

    American lives were lost. We need to get to the bottom of what happen in Benghazi. Some one needs to be held accountable. Senator Graham is right on. Like everything else, Obama and his administration is nothing but full of lies and cover ups. Obama will go down in history as the most lying President ever.

    November 10, 2013 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  16. Jj smith

    Graham is not interested in keeping heat on President Obama, he is interested in keeping Hilary's involvement with Benghazi in on the front page because the GOP fears Hilary in 2016. It appear the GOP has no interest in doing anything that s good for America only to make Obama look bad. The GOP is not what I remember growing up.

    November 10, 2013 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  17. unretired05

    We shut down the government, we wouldn't back down. We didn't release our stranglehold on the country till the Koch brothers told us to back off because it was affecting their bottom line.
    This time I think we got him cause if we repeat this lie enough times people will forget it's a lie. I sure hope the Koch's let us go with this lie.

    November 10, 2013 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  18. Namejb Goode

    The want to accumulate ammunition on Hillary.

    November 10, 2013 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  19. Rick

    Obstructionist, thats all they have.

    November 10, 2013 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  20. Charlie

    Graham, go get a real job vs. flapping ur jaws as Obozo.!!!! no one cares, this is old news.

    November 10, 2013 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  21. myrtlemaylee

    Graham is a self-serving, old lady who can't seem to perform service for his country because he's so busy trying to "oversee" & create new Obama scandals, IMO.

    November 10, 2013 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  22. gregor1971

    I kind of actually agree with him. Why hasn't the administration allowed these people to be interviewed? Why has it taken so long?

    November 10, 2013 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  23. walkabout

    Remember marines killed in Lebanon during Reagon's time or New york City during Bush's time? Oh that's right we are not suppose to bring up the past according to the GOP. Keep bringing up something the American people already know and don't care about. Then on top of that bring things that matter to us to a stop in order to force your point. Wonder how that will work out for you?

    November 10, 2013 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  24. LouAZ

    Don't try to confuse me with facts. My mind is made up. By the way . . . have you seen my mind ? I know it was here yesterday . . . or was that the day before yesterday ? What day was yesterday ? Never mind. Vote Repub/TP !

    November 10, 2013 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  25. Bubba Ray

    Ted Cruz / Ben Ghazi
    The 2016 GOP Dream Team

    November 10, 2013 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
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