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Lindsey Graham just taught a master class on winning the debate

Lindsey Graham just taught a master class on winning the debate

“This is for all the veterans.”

Yesterday, Donald Trump shocked the conscience of the planet when he revealed Senator Lindsey Graham’s personal cell phone number during an open press conference.

Over the past few days, feuding between the two presidential hopefuls has boiled over, fueled by the outrage that ensued after Trump made a disparaging comment about Senator John McCain’s military service. It has been a field day for the media, and for activists on both sides of the issue:

Graham called Trump a jackass! Trump called Graham an idiot! AND RELEASED HIS CELL PHONE NUMBER!

It may have been a jerk move, but it resonated—nobody likes a bully, and many conservatives have been waiting for the moment when someone would take Graham to task over his attitude toward the base. Graham took the punch like a champ…

…but took things one step further, and turned Trump’s prank on its head.

Welcome to Christmas for political junkies. Watch:

This was a brilliant move.

I say that not as a Trump-denier or Graham-apologist, but as someone who has spent more than a few election cycles watching candidates torch each other, only to see one or both accidentally self-immolate.

Trump defines himself via the kind of audacity that many conservatives crave; in recent days, however, that tactic has earned him criticism, even from voters who may agree with him on controversial issues like illegal immigration. Similarly, Graham has drawn the ire of conservatives who saw him as a bully well before he started calling people jackasses.

It was time for a tactical switch.

This video is funny, and melodramatic, and ridiculous on its face—but it also shows that sometimes, good humor (and a little mockery) can be a lot more effective than nasty rhetoric. Cheek doesn’t alienate. Neither does confidence (although it may serve to enrage his opponents.) By admitting that, yes, Trump did indeed pull one over on him, Graham has disarmed his most vocal opponent—and made that disarming not just public, but viral.

PSA: No flacks were harmed during the filming of this video:


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Um, he could of gotten a new sim card. Shows you how out of touch he is.

    Well now, destroying a SIM Card, or replacing it, won’t be nearly as much fun as he had doing this video. Besides, The Graham showed he actually had a sense of humor too, plus that was a very old style phone too! 😉

    NC Mountain Girl in reply to rayc. | July 22, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    Looks like someone is in the market for a sense of humor.

    Personally I am charmed that Graham has one. It explains a lot about why he keeps get elected and why most of his colleagues like him.

      I know he was trying to be humorous. I don’t like the man’s politics, and used the sim card thing to say he was out of touch. Which he is.

        Estragon in reply to rayc. | July 22, 2015 at 6:23 pm

        So who are YOUR cool, “in touch,” hep-to-the-latest-jive Senators?

          rayc in reply to Estragon. | July 22, 2015 at 8:46 pm

          Mike Lee, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul (sometimes), Jeff Sessions, Jim Inhofe. Actually, anyone who would be will to purge the Federal Bureaucracy of Democrat opperatives like Linda Lerners. I would guess there are thousands of them (maybe more). We now have a bureaucracy that legislates, and judges without any checks on power. If the problem isn’t addressed soon, it will not matter who controls any branch of government. They also need to destroy the data bases they have on us. I can see what will happen, the government will be tilted against anyone who probably disagrees with the progresive agenda. (The Dems already have such a database.) Lindsey Graham, is not one of those people. He and John McCain are often the first to cross the aisle, to help the Democrats. Like most long term Washington politicians, he’s out of touch with the American people.

        The Friendly Grizzly in reply to rayc. | July 22, 2015 at 8:25 pm

        He may also have TDMA service from Sprint or Verizon: no SIM. But it is also just as easy to call 611 and ask for a new number.

          Sammy Finkelman in reply to The Friendly Grizzly. | July 23, 2015 at 11:56 am

          That’s right.

          All he needed was a new telephone number, not a new phone.

          I’m not sure who is supposed to have the idea that you can’t change ophone numbersd without changing ohones.

          Actually nowadays, and thanks to an Act of Congress (the Telecommunications Act of 1996, which Lindsey Graham rprobably voted for) you can change telephone without havinbg to change phone numbers.

          It took a year or two to implement that, and it was extended to wireless numbers in 2003.

      stevewhitemd in reply to NC Mountain Girl. | July 22, 2015 at 8:40 pm

      He was indeed funny.

      I still won’t vote for him.

      Now what would REALLY be funny is if, duh, Goober nailed his other hand with the meat cleaver.

Sim card? Is that the thingy they use to scan groceries with?

Henry Hawkins | July 22, 2015 at 4:49 pm

Trump vs Graham = who gives a shit?

    “Trump vs Graham = who gives a shit?”

    Me. Nothing I like better than seeing McCain and his miniature left appendage getting blasted. Trump is providing a service and real entertainment in this election.

    Pass the popcorn.

Fringe candidate high-jinks. Yea.

MouseTheLuckyDog | July 22, 2015 at 5:29 pm

A quote that I wanted to use when the whole business with McCain started: The object of war is not to die for your country, but to make the other bastard die for his.

As for Graham, he lost this when it was started. The more it grows, the more people realize that the guy who call Trump a jackass had previously asked him for an endorsement and a campaign contribution, and gave him his cellphone number at that time. ( Also suggesting a money for influence exxhange. )

At the same time Trump is not only leading in the polls, he is increasing his lead.

So far I think Walker and Cruz are probably responding best to Trump.

Amateur hour.

Crappy medium overwhelmed any intended message.

Lindsey Graham = embarrassment.

Vacuous. Totally content-free.

What a candidate must tell voters is who he is, what he stands for, and why anyone would want to vote for him. This does none of these things.

Pure and distilled waste of opportunity.

Points for Graham. Wins the mini-media-war, irritates the Trumpsters who hated him anyway. Watch their spittle fly!

Can’t they both lose?

This one can be stuck in the annals of campaign humor, just like the vid of Rand Paul taking a chainsaw, machete and the burning of the tax code. Liberals are speechless. They have been totally flummoxed by these moves.

    tom swift in reply to Stan25. | July 22, 2015 at 7:53 pm

    The Rand Paul one meant something, even if nothing terribly profound. Obviously he has a major beef with the tax code and thinks something radical should be done to it. Message sent, message received—can’t realistically ask much more from a campaign ad than that.

    But what is Graham saying? He has a tiff with Trump? So what? A feud with Trump isn’t going to earn many votes. Maybe Graham doesn’t think much of phones? So he gets the Luddite vote… All in all, not really a successful utilization of the medium.

Lindsey “Grahamnesty” famously acknowledged climate change truther:

Supports closing GITMO
Supports amnesty for illegals (but not border control)
Supports arming Al Quaeda / Muslim Brotherhood Revolutionaries in Syria
Supports abridging the First Amendment for those who criticize the government
Supports massive new internet sales tax
Supports subordinating American sovereignty to the United Nations
Opposes medical malpractice tort reform
Supports Obama’s energy taxes and Cap and Trade
Sides with Democrats on government regulation to combat “climate change
Supports restricting the First Amendment rights to criticize Islamic radicalism
Supports liberal proposal to nationalize banks
Supports restrictions on the Second Amendment
Supports granting members of the Muslim Brotherhood high level positions in the US government

And has now destroyed his cell phone and and idiots jump up and down while clapping their hands and yelling, “It’s a game changer!”

    Barry in reply to userpen. | July 22, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Yes. Perfect.

    Graham is a democrat. A far left one. He masquerades as a republican.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to userpen. | July 22, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    Actually, Grahamn’s positions only used to be Democrat standard. Now they’re establishment GOP standard as well. The whole shebang, Dems and the GOP, have galloped to the left.

Now would be a good time to stop snapping each other on the ass with wet towels and start shredding Democrats. If they’re not quite sure how to do that maybe Fiorina could give them her number.

If Hillary Clinton had done that you guys, put out a video of her physically destroying a cellphone because “I need a new phone number,” we’d all be guffawing at how old and out of touch Granny over there is, that she doesn’t even have the most rudimentary idea of how cellphones work. And we’d be groaning over what a lame stunt it was.

Don’t tell me we wouldn’t.

inspectorudy | July 22, 2015 at 7:23 pm

If I had to make a choice of Gramnesty or Trump I would vote on gonads and Gramnesty would lose by a wide margin. This race needed a kick in the a$$ and Trump is giving it one. Whether you like Trump or not he is making the other candidates act like they are working for us and not trying to win a beauty contest. Before its over he will have forced the issues that we all feel are the real ones and not the ones that the girls think they need to talk about. Immigration, foreign negotiations, military readiness, jobs and getting rid of obamacare. After that if he has any blood left he can bring up the SCOTUS and what we can do about it.

I laughed.

I have been watching Sen. Graham on CSpann in hearings for years. He does his homework, he thinks independently and in depth, and he has been driving the current administration nuts. I wish he had a better chance at winning the Republican nomination, because he would make an excellent President.

The Repubs are blessed with an abundance of riches, this time around.

CloseTheFed | July 22, 2015 at 8:22 pm

The only good thing about Graham’s ad: humor rather than outrage in politics.

Other than that, Grahamnesty who?

MouseTheLuckyDog | July 22, 2015 at 8:55 pm

I spend sometime on IRC tech forums. Every so often you get someone in asking a question like “I don’t like my phone, how can I break it so I can take it back?”, ” I ruined the windows on my laptop so how can I break it so I can take it back?”

All sorts of questions “How can I break this in such a way that I can take it bck without paying the restocking fee?”

Breaking a phone to get a new number sounds so like a teenager.

MouseTheLuckyDog | July 22, 2015 at 8:57 pm

I don’t know if Trump will be a good President. I do know that he will accomplish some things, but do not know if I will like those things.

However there is one thing that I have to say:
It would be nice to see Trump become President just to watch Rosie ODonnel’s head explode!

    NC Mountain Girl in reply to MouseTheLuckyDog. | July 22, 2015 at 11:15 pm

    Talk about low expectations. Give Trump political power and his rapaciousness will make Hillary look like Mother Theresa. I prefer to support candidates who have a record of being able to accomplish their campaign promises. Obama proved how cheap telling people what they want to hear can be.

    I know people are frustrated, by why are so many flocking behind a real life version of a modern, urban Lonesome Rhodes? The media driven loose cannon out for himself?

    The opportunity for 2016 is in giving voice the all the young positive voices in the Republican field, including two Hispanics and an Asian, That is because the Democrat field is old and stale.

    So why on earth are all of you encouraging the evil media driven candidacy of an old, rich, corrupt, well past his prime white man who comes across as mean spirited?
    You are all being played by Tromp and the media and you are too angry to see it.

    Do you really want to throw the election to Elizabeth Warren. Does scratching that spite filled itched matter that much to you? It must, because Trump is playing into a whole lot of stereotypes about Republicans that Warren will surely capitalize on.

      So, exactly what has “Tromp” said that isn’t true?

      His stance on immigration? Veterans Administration? Trade?

      Maybe you just don’t like the truth. It is making you and all the R candidates that are for amnesty and unlimited illegal immigration, stomping on the veterans in hospitals, and lousy trade deals uncomfortable because you might actually have to speak about these things in front of the very people you will have to get votes from. And we will not vote for you when your positions are the very same ones fauchohontas holds.

dorsaighost | July 22, 2015 at 9:12 pm

I would point out that Trump has not bad mouthed anyone who had not first personally attacked him … don’t start nothin won’t be nothin

    Sammy Finkelman in reply to dorsaighost. | July 23, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    Badmouthing someone in retaliation for crticizing you – withh whatever comes to mind that you can say, fair or not – is a sign of poor character.

    Maybe that works for him, in business, I don’t know.

      “Badmouthing someone in retaliation for crticizing you – withh whatever comes to mind that you can say, fair or not – is a sign of poor character.”

      Being nice to someone in retaliation for criticizing you – is the sign of an idiot.

Hope his emails were backed up someplace or there will be lots of trouble.

Trump just publicly pantsed one of the biggest RINOs in the Senate. I haven’t laughed so hard at politics since Ron Reagan was around telling us jokes while the Establishment clucked in outrage like a bunch of old hens. 🙂

TOP STORY: Miss Lindsey flounces out of the room, rustling her petticoats, mascara running down her cheeks
Sobs: “That mean Donald gave my ex-boyfriend my new digits”

Meanwhile Graham continues to poll at -7%. Releases silly video. LI easily impressed.

    bw222 in reply to DaMav. | July 22, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Amy Miller really hates Trump.

      Anonamom in reply to bw222. | July 23, 2015 at 11:48 am

      I think mostly she’s just your basic RINO-and not terribly bright.

        Juba Doobai! in reply to Anonamom. | July 23, 2015 at 4:03 pm

        The girl is two fries short of a happy meal and, worse yet, writes like a 12-year old—all those exclamation marks and caps!

        Plus, who, in full possession of wits and faculties, would say something like this: “Donald Trump shocked the conscience of the planet when he revealed Senator Lindsey Graham’s personal cell phone number during an open press conference.” That is so mind-numbingly dumb one is tempted to say she must’ve been engaged in satire, except that that art requires brains.

      DaMav in reply to bw222. | July 23, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      I like LI a lot but maybe they should avoid writers who are so easily starstruck by prosaic bags of Massengill.

Lindsey Graham might as well be a Democrat. His Heritage Action rating for the current session is 47%.

    Sammy Finkelman in reply to bw222. | July 23, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    He has some differences with Jim Dimint (which I think he kept quiet about or avoided poiinting out when Dimint was in the Senate)

    But the same as a Democrat?

    What are their Heritage ratings?

    And since when did Heritage under Jim DiMint become the epitome of what is conservative?? (or good, let’s say)

Sam in Texas | July 22, 2015 at 10:40 pm

Lindsay won “the debate”? Really? What debate? I don’t get it.

Henry Hawkins | July 22, 2015 at 10:43 pm

This is demeaning to American politics.

    To “clean” for you Henry? It has been much nastier in past times.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to Barry. | July 23, 2015 at 10:43 am

      I mean the media slumming, carnival barking, Sham Wow way candidates now present themselves, with all the gravitas and decorum of an episode of Battle Of The Network Stars.

        Yea, much better when the lie to us with a sober straight face 🙂

        Trump is shaking up the R party right to it’s core. Good deal as far as I’m concerned. If it takes a dose of “media slumming, carnival barking, Sham Wow” then I’m all for it.

I predict, and you’ve heard it here first, that before this is all settled, as in dust clouds, Prince Reice (sic 😉 !!!), will denounce Trump and throw him off the 8/6 debate, where upon, Trump will announce his own debate show, invite Carly, Cruz, Rand (Maybe), Walker, and a few others to join him the day after the 8/6 debacle.

Of course, I could be wrong yet kinda like the idea of Trump going rogue debate-wise. If nothing else, it will turn up the volume and get the RINOs to run away and hide; which would be a good thing for the nation.

This fairy is an ass. Redeeming value; he throws much better than the fairy in chief.

Uncle Samuel | July 23, 2015 at 12:26 pm

The ad is contrived and lame and carries a subtle message: That Graham will go to all extremes to keep from hearing from his constituents on the Border and other issues and does not care about their feelings and opinions.

Trump gave the phone number so concerned citizens would have a way to let their voices be heard.

Graham and his buddy McCain were part of the Gang of Eight and other amnesty efforts. So doing, they are ignoring the consequences of illegals invading our country, sucking up billions and billions in entitlements and perks, dealing drugs, raping and killing US citizens’ beloved children.

Evidently this lack of concern is not uncommon. Some of our fine DC lawmakers SLEPT during the testimony before Congress.

As for McCain: One Arizona Republican said he rarely comes to meet with his constituents these days. He has been censured by his State Party twice.

In addition, there is much evidence that McCain has not been a heroic student soldier, pilot, POW, husband nor Senator.

McCain is a hero like Obama is an American.

    Uncle Samuel in reply to Uncle Samuel. | July 23, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    As a sitting Senator, Graham’s best winning response would have been to have a new message on that phone directing the people with concerns to a designated email address and promise to pay attention to their concerns.

    He missed the boat with his silly clowning ad.

      Sammy Finkelman in reply to Uncle Samuel. | July 23, 2015 at 1:26 pm

      If that was a phone which he used to call Donald Trump, then it could be that phone was used only for politics (for legal reasons) and Lindsey Graham wold not be interested in making Donald Trump aware that he has other phones and phone numbers, and that he gave out the wrong one.

Juba Doobai! | July 23, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Amy, have you debated much? It would seem not if you think Graham’s face-saving move was masterful instruction on winning a debate.

Graham didn’t win. He had his arse handed to him, so all he could do was face save with the usual tactic of the class clown: turn a whipping into a joke.

This is getting to be a very rough crowd, ready to throw rotten cabbages, tomatoes, lumps of coal, stink bombs and other signs of disdain towards an author they wish to intimidate.

However, anyone who dares to disagree with my criticism, is free to meet me outside our establishment after our evening repast. I shall have balloons filled with stinky perfumed liquids and spoiled cream squash pies at the ready, with perhaps even some extremely old rotten tomatoes from Grandma’s garden, all ready to launch at the spiritual ghost of said miscreants and malcontents.

OTOH: Anyone who survives this bunch of rowdy LI malcontents (Note that only some relatively few (?) commentors are in that category) is as strong as they come and can then go forward with head raised high, etc …, ad nauseam, and so forth. And, we would (Some at least!) then salute that person.


Sammy Finkelman | July 23, 2015 at 7:40 pm

Somebody who was not the Donald said something similar about John McCain in the year 2000:

Al Franken.

Miss Lindsey didn’t win this one. Only a Washington politician would throw the phone away, rather than just change the number. Advantage Trump!

MarlaHughes | July 24, 2015 at 8:00 am

Thanks Amy, I found it hilarious. Trump’s bombastic self aggrandizing media whoredom is laughable and should be ridiculed at every opportunity. I could never support Graham as a candidate and find him smarmy and slimy, but that was masterful.
Side note: Love how the border patrol let Trump know his trying to use them for his self aggrandizement wouldn’t fly with them, either. Calling him down to the border to honor him indeed. BWAHAHAHAHAHA

Sammy Finkelman | July 24, 2015 at 5:18 pm

The union backed out because of the danger of people asking too many questions. I don’t think it was trump who decided to use them.