On June 4, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) warned that President Barack Obama could face “impeachment” if he continued to release terror detainees from the military prison facility at Guantánamo Bay without Congress’s explicit approval. On Thursday, however–the same day that the president announced his unilateral executive amnesty–Obama released five more terror detainees from Guantánamo, including four Al Qaeda fighters.
At the time, Graham told The Hill: “It’s going to be impossible for them to flow prisoners out of Gitmo now without a huge backlash….There will be people on our side calling for his impeachment if he did that.”
The context was the trade of five senior Taliban leaders for American Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl–a release in violation of the National Defense Authorization Act’s requirement that Congress receive 30 days’ notice.
Though it falls to the House to draft and consider articles of impeachment, Graham is considered one of the more senior members of the Senate caucus on foreign affairs and national security. He has yet to criticize the President’s latest Guantánamo release, however.
The last press release on Graham’s Senate website is dated Nov. 7, and his Twitter and Facebook pages attack Obama’s executive amnesty, but not the prisoner release.
On Friday, President Obama mocked Republican outrage over his use–or abuse–of executive authority. “I didn’t dissolve parliament,” he joked in an address to high school students and illegal aliens in Las Vegas.
At the time Graham mentioned the threat of impeachment, he faced a primary election in South Carolina six days later, June 10–albeit a contest he was widely expected to win, and which he carried easily by over 40 points.
Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak edits Breitbart California and is the author of the new ebook, Wacko Birds: The Fall (and Rise) of the Tea Party, available for Amazon Kindle.
Follow Joel on Twitter: @joelpollak