Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) appeared on CBS’ “Face the Nation” Sunday and told host Major Garrett that if he were President Donald J. Trump, he would do the opposite of what President Barack Obama did in Iran. Many critics say the 44th president failed to show adequate support for anti-government protesters in 2009, which only emboldened the theocratic state to increase its brutal regime and control over its people.
Lindsey Graham, a one time 2016 GOP presidential rival of Trump, lambasted Barack Obamaas an abject failure for his appeasement of the Islamic Republic rather then standing up for its protesters yearning for freedom. The South Carolina Senator showed support for the current protesters saying “The Iranian people are not our enemy. The Ayatollah is the enemy of the world.”
Graham told his interviewer that Obama's approach failed.
MAJOR GARRETT: --in Iran. What is the import of these demonstrations on the street, and what should President Trump do or say about them?
LINDSEY GRAHAM: Well, it tells us that the Obama approach of relieving sanctions, hoping the regime would moderate, has failed. The people are not getting the benefit of sanctions relief. They're more upset with their oppressors than ever. The money from sanction relief has gone into rebuilding the Iranian military, and they're destabilizing the Mideast. (emphasis added)
Garaham encouraged President Trump to have “a nationwide address pretty soon explaining why the Iranian nuclear deal is a bad deal for the world, what a better deal would look like, and urge Congress and the European allies to get a better deal with Iran -- before it's too late.”
Graham then laid into Obama even more, advising the current president to do the polar opposite of what Obama did while in office.
MAJOR GARRETT: And the-- purpose of that national address would be to-- take note of this moment and put the United States four square on behalf and behind those people protesting in the streets? Some have said that would be the wrong thing to do because that would give the regime an enemy to point at. Us, again.
LINDSEY GRAHAM: That was the Obama approach. If I were Trump I'd do the exact opposite of Obama. Obama said, "I don't want to get involved, I don't want mess up the chance of getting a deal with Iran." Well, the deal with Iran hasn't worked. The money didn't go to benefit the people, it went to benefit the Ayatollah and his henchmen. (emphasis added)
Graham's words come as protests in Iran escalate. The Iranian government has cut off internet access, killed two protesters, threatened crack downs on what they deem "illegal protests," and arrested at least 50.