What is going on with Republican (?) Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina? He’s never been the most conservative of conservatives but, this week, he’s managed to tell us just how unimportant he finds the Constitution not once, but twice. Apparently, in Lindsey Graham’s world, the First and Fourth amendments are disposable.
On Tuesday, Lindsey Graham questioned whether or not the First Amendment applies to all Americans, or just a select few. Congress is weighing a media shield law in the wake of the AP/Justice Department scandal. That leads to the question of whether or not bloggers will be covered under such a shield. When asked about it, Graham said
“Who is a journalist is a question we need to ask ourselves. Is any blogger out there saying anything—do they deserve First Amendment protection? These are the issues of our times.”
Of course, this immediately raised a few eyebrows. Graham later chalked that up to a slip of the tongue, and later tweeted
Senator Graham didn’t mention anything about the right to free press though.
If that tweet made anyone suspect that Graham was a friend of the Constitution, it should be back in question today. As it was reported yesterday, the NSA has been collecting the phone records and metadata of millions of Verizon customers in the United States. Certainly no fan of limited government can be ok with such unwarranted (literal and figurative) breach of our Fourth Amendment. Not to worry! Graham once again proved that he is not such a fan. “I’m a Verizon customer,” Graham said. “I don’t mind Verizon turning over records to the government if the government is going to make sure that they try to match up a known terrorist phone with somebody in the United States.” He then doubled down on his position, saying “I’m sure we should be doing this.”
In what version of America does he live? In what America can the government flagrantly step on the Constitution when they see fit? Lindsey Graham’s America, apparently. The last thing we need in this country is big-government politicians masquerading as conservatives. Graham, we’re on to you.