Republican Lindsey Graham ends his 2016 presidential campaign

WASHINGTON -- With just over a month to go until early voting begins in the 2016 race for president, Republican Sen.

See Full Article

Lindsey Graham announced Monday he was ending his campaign.

The South Carolina senator -- the only candidate from one of the four early voting states -- posted a video saying he was proud of his campaign, which he said was focused on the nation's security.

"You have honoured me with your support. I believe we have run a campaign we can be proud of," Graham said. "We put forth bold and practical solutions to big problems about retiring our debt and fixing our broken immigration system. This has been a problem solvers campaign. However the centerpiece of my campaign has been securing our nation.

Having mustered little support in the polls, Graham's exit will not have an immediate effect on the race in the final stretch before the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses and the Feb. 9 New Hampshire primary. But his decision could produce a ripple effect in his home state, which follows New Hampshire with a Feb. 20 primary. Some leading Republicans in South Carolina have remained uncommitted to this point out of loyalty to their senior senator, but now are free to take sides. Graham, too, could make an endorsement, though he's given no indication of when that might be.

Graham, 60, plunged into the contest in June on a platform of hawkish foreign policy and a declaration that newcomers need not apply for a job that offers no chance for "on-the-job training." At the time, anything was possible because none in the mob of GOP candidates was capturing a sizable base of support.

But over the summer, political neophytes Donald Trump and Ben Carson surged to the front of the pack and forced far better-known candidates, such as former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, to fight for support.

Graham, urged to run by 2008 GOP presidential nominee John McCain, won so little backing in national polls that he failed to qualify even for the undercard GOP debate in November.

An Air Force veteran and reservist, Graham is a foreign-policy hawk who has called President Barack Obama "a small-minded guy in big times." After the attacks on Paris that killed 129 people, Graham pushed for an authorization of military force against the Islamic State that would allow the U.S. to attack the groups' supporters anywhere, with no time limit.

Virtually every Republican candidate has blasted Obama as weak on foreign policy, but Graham was often the only would-be nominee who did not hedge when asked about whether he would deploy more ground troops. He stated from the outset of his campaign that more U.S. troops are needed, adding that "American soldiers will die in Iraq and eventually in Syria to protect our homeland."

But as he visited core GOP supporters in Iowa and New Hampshire, Graham did not back away from positions that separated him from the GOP's conservative base. In New Hampshire, Graham said he won't abandon his call for an immigration overhaul that includes both improvements in border security and a path to legal status for the millions of people living in the country illegally. "All I can say is that we need to fix immigration. It's a national security issue, it's a cultural issue and it's an economic issue. I am not going to give an inch on the idea."

Graham, a member of the conservative class that swept into control of the House in 1994 has, at times, joined Democrats on other high-profile votes. In October 2013, he voted for a deal that ended a partial government shutdown and raised the nation's borrowing limit.

He has panned conservatives who have been willing to let the government shut down if their demands aren't met, saying: "We're a right-of-centre nation. We're not a right-ditch nation." Graham also supported both of Obama's nominees to the Supreme Court. "Elections have consequences," he explained.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Donald Trump on being president: ‘I thought it would be easier’ [Video]

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is sounding wistful as he reflects on his first 100 days on the job. The president says he “loved” his “previous life. I had so many things going.” He says his new gig is “more work than in my previous life. Source
  • Canadian Forces say they want to remove 77 members for sexual misconduct

    World News Toronto Sun
    OTTAWA — Military officials say they have moved this year to force out 77 service members found guilty of sexual misconduct. Many of the cases are older and none of the members have been released yet, as their files go through what the military says is due process. Source
  • House OKs bill averting Saturday gov't shutdown, Senate next

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- With just hours to spare, the House easily approved a short-term spending bill Friday that would prevent a partial federal shutdown over the weekend. But on President Donald Trump's 99th day in office, lawmakers were leaving for the weekend without completing two other measures he's coveted: A Republican health care overhaul and a budget financing government for the entire year. Source
  • Trump signs order to expand drilling in Arctic, Atlantic oceans

    World News CBC News
    Working to dismantle his predecessor's environmental legacy, President Donald Trump has signed an executive order Friday that could lead to the expansion of drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. With one day left to rack up accomplishments before he reaches his 100th day in office, Trump ordered his interior secretary to review an Obama-era plan that dictates which locations are open to offshore drilling, with the goal of the new administration to expand operations. Source
  • Body of Sgt. Robert Dynerowicz returning to Kitchener, Ont. Friday

    Canada News CBC News
    The body of Sgt. Robert "Bobby" Dynerowicz will be returned to Kitchener, Ont. Friday afternoon. Dynerowicz died Tuesday after he was involved in an accident while riding in a light armoured vehicle during training at CFB Wainwright, Alta. Source
  • U.S. to push for tighter sanctions on North Korea at UN Security Council meeting

    World News Toronto Sun
    Turning to diplomacy after flexing military muscle, the United States will urge the U.N. Security Council on Friday to increase economic pressure on North Korea over its nuclear weapons program, leaning on China in particular to turn the screws on its wayward ally. Source
  • Cops: Purse saved woman shot at point-blank range

    World News Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Police say a New York City woman shot at point-blank range during a robbery was saved from a bullet wound thanks to her purse. The New York Police Department says a 52-year-old man ran up to his intended victim on a Brooklyn street early Wednesday morning and demanded her car keys. Source
  • Forces seek to oust 77 members for sexual misconduct

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA -- Military officials say they have moved this year to force out 77 service members found guilty of sexual misconduct. Many of the cases are older and none of the members have been released yet, as their files go through what the military says is due process. Source
  • Forces seeking ouster of 77 for sexual misconduct

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA -- Military officials say they have moved this year to force out 77 service members found guilty of sexual misconduct. Many of the cases are older and none of the members have been released yet, as their files go through what the military says is due process. Source
  • Trump: ‘I thought it would be easier’ [Video]

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is sounding wistful as he reflects on his first 100 days on the job. The president says he “loved” his “previous life. I had so many things going.” He says his new gig is “more work than in my previous life. Source