Graham claims holding Trump accountable will cause 'further violence'

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The South Carolina senator warned his colleagues against voting to impeach Trump for inciting the Capitol riots on Jan. 6.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is once again sticking up for Donald Trump, threatening his Republican colleagues against voting for impeachment by saying that doing so will inspire Trump's supporters, who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 at the behest of Trump himself, to commit more violence.

"Supporting the impeachment of President Trump under these circumstances will do great damage to the institutions of government and could invite further violence at a time the President is calling for calm," Graham tweeted.

"The process being used in the House to impeach President Trump is an affront to any concept of due process and will further divide the country," he added.

Graham's comment is a 180 degree flip from his remarks last week, when he refused to block certification of the Electoral College vote, as Republicans had previously pledged to do.

On the day of the Capitol insurrection, Graham said, "Trump and I, we had a hell of a journey. I hate it being this way. … all I can say is count me out. Enough is enough. I tried to be helpful."

Yet on Tuesday, Graham was back on Air Force One with Trump on a trip to Texas, where Trump touted his border wall and made more threats against President-elect Joe Biden.

Just prior to leaving for the trip, Trump himself appeared to warn Congress that impeaching him again would incite more violence from his supporters.

"This impeachment is causing tremendous anger, and you're doing it, and it's really a terrible thing that they're doing. For Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer to continue on this path, I think it's causing tremendous danger to our country and it's causing tremendous anger," Trump said upon leaving the White House Tuesday.

Graham's comments seem to be part of a coordinated message from the Republican Party, which has long backed Trump's lies about a supposedly stolen election — lies which ultimately led to the violent attack on the Capitol last week.

"Those calling for impeachment or invoking the 25th Amendment in response to President Trump's rhetoric this week are themselves engaging in intemperate and inflammatory language and calling for action that is equally irresponsible and could well incite further violence," Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) tweeted over the weekend, as calls for Trump's impeachment grew.

Ultimately, the threat of more violence has not swayed Democrats from moving to impeach Trump a second time.

The vote to impeach, likely to include at least a handful of Republican House members in favor, is set for Wednesday. It is unclear when the Senate might ultimately take up the matter, though experts do not believe Democrats have the required two-thirds vote required to convict.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.