The hawkish Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina says he is thinking about running for president in 2016.
In an interview with Stephen Hayes of the Weekly Standard, the senator, running for re-election to the Senate this year, said: “If I get through my general election, if nobody steps up in the presidential mix, if nobody’s out there talking — me and McCain have been talking — I may just jump in to get to make these arguments,” Graham said.
Graham, 59, also dismissed Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, 43, as a presidential candidate, saying he is too young. “He’s a good guy, but after doing immigration with him — we don’t need another young guy not quite ready,” Graham told the outlet. “He’s no Obama by any means, but he’s so afraid of the right, and I’ve let that go.”
Graham’s sidekick, former presidential nominee John McCain, is nudging him to get into the race.
“I’ve strongly encouraged him to give it a look,” McCain said. “I think Lindsey has vast and deep experience on these issues that very few others have. I happen to like a lot of these guys — I like Jeb Bush, Chris Christie. Ted Cruz has gone out of his way to tell people how much he agrees with me on national security.”
Asked about Rubio, McCain said “he’s probably as articulate as anyone in our party” but “doesn’t have the background that Lindsey does.”