WASHINGTON — Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Thursday that he believes the Republican Party cannot “move forward” without former President Donald Trump as a figurehead.
“I would just say to my Republican colleagues, ‘can we move forward without President Trump?’ The answer is no,” Graham, R-S.C., told Sean Hannity on Fox News.
Graham’s comments come as the GOP is looking to remove Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., from her position as chair of the House Republican Conference over her continued criticism of Trump and refusal to perpetuate his false election fraud claims.
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“I’ve always liked Liz Cheney, but she’s made a determination that the Republican Party can’t grow with President Trump. I’ve determined we can’t grow without him,” Graham said.
The longtime supporter of the former president said that working people and minorities are attracted to the Republican Party under Trump because “President Trump appears to be on the side of people working really hard… because he is.”
Cheney’s potential ouster is a signal that the GOP is prioritizing its relationship with Trump in upcoming election fights. She was one of 10 Republicans in the House to vote for Trump’s impeachment over his alleged incitement of the deadly Capitol riot on Jan. 6, and she has continued to argue that the party should move away from its focus on Trump.