Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) argued that officials in the Obama administration are “the only people in the world” that believe the United States’ strategy against ISIS is working while remaining evasive on a possible 2016 presidential run on Tuesday’s “On the Record” on the Fox News Channel.
“The goal is to degrade and destroy ISIL and deny them a safe haven in Syria and Iraq to attack America. That goal is not being achieved. We are going backwards, not forward. So, when the white house says we are winning, they’re probably the only people in the world that think that” he said. He further accused the White House of trying to run out the clock, and “trying to do the least amount possible to get this issue behind him and leave office without having destroyed ISIL to keep a campaign promise not to go into Iraq,” which he characterized as “dangerous,” and “pathetic leadership”
Graham made the case for U.S. ground troops, stating, “If you go in on the ground against ISIL, you need an American partner. The Saudi Arabian government, they have airplanes they have ground troops, but name one air bombing in the last 100 years defeated any foe of any size or strength. At the end of the day, nobody is going to our right. Nobody is going on the ground unless we go on to the ground. Nobody is going to engage in Syria until we engage in Syria on the ground.”
The senator avoided making a definitive statement on his possible 2016 presidential ambitions, declaring himself “all in for getting re-elected to the United States Senate from South Carolina.” He added that he was “nowhere near” ready for a run in 2016, but warned voters “next time you vote for commander-in-chief, make sure you are voting for somebody who has the experience and the knowledge to get the job right.”
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