A Republican from South Carolina claimed the previous president’s party membership could ruin the GOP.
Sen. Lindsey Graham was caught on camera, admitting he thought the former president would undermine the Republican Party.
“[Donald Trump] could make the Republican Party something that nobody else I know could make it,” he said in a video shared on YouTube. “He could make it bigger, he could make it stronger, he could make it more diverse, and he also could destroy it.”
Graham suggested he is still trying to forgive him for his role in the Capitol riots on Jan. 6.
“Donald Trump was my friend before the riot and I am trying to keep a relationship with him after the riot,” he said. “I can still consider him a friend.”
The senator believes the former president should have done more to prevent extreme protesters from smashing windows, vandalizing public property, seizing offices, and forcing a complete evacuation of both the House and Senate.
“What happened was a dark day in American history and we are going to move forward,” he said.
Although he has serious concerns about his former party president, he believes the GOP will have to learn to live with Trump.
“I want this to continue, I want us to continue to make the policies that I think will make America strong,” he said. “Probably the best way for the Republican Party to do this is with Trump, not without Trump.”
The remarks came after Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) recently reversed his earlier criticism of President Trump and supported his nomination for the 2024 election.
“The nominee of the party? Absolutely,” McConnell said in a video shared on YouTube.
McConnell admitted he previously expressed serious concerns about President Trump’s ability to run the country. However, he suggested he had already moved on and was happy to give his former party president a second chance.
“My point is what happened in the past is not something relevant now; we are moving forward,” he said. “Let us focus on winning the House and the Senate in ’22.”
He also revealed there could be some competition for the Republican presidential nomination.
“There is a lot to happen between now and ’24,” he said. “I have got at least four members that I think are planning on running for president plus some governors and others. There is no incumbent. It should be a wide-open race.”