CNN Anchors Challenge Rep. Omar on Claim Lindsey Graham is ‘Compromised’: ‘Based on What Evidence?’


Newly sworn-in Rep. Ilhan Omar raised eyebrows on Wednesday when she tweeted a 2015 video of Senator Lindsey Graham calling out then-candidate Donald Trump, calling him a “race-baiting, xenophobic, religious bigot,” and adding “they got to him, he is compromised!”

While it is true that Lindsey Graham’s public opinion of the Commander in Chief has shifted dramatically, it’s not entirely clear what Omar meant to say about Graham. But right-0f-center media immediately saw Omar’s tweet as an irresponsible outing of the confirmed bachelor, and not unfairly.

Take, for example, the lede of’s write up:

A hard-left Democrat from Minnesota is facing backlash and accusations of homophobia after repeating baseless allegations pushed by MSNBC and liberal activists that Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham is somehow being blackmailed into supporting President Trump.

So it was entirely appropriate for CNN hosts Jim Sciutto and Poppy Harlow to challenge the newly elected Representative, who reminded viewers that she may not be ready for dayside programming, let alone prime time.

Sciutto asked “I wonder if you would explain what you were talking about there. This sparked a fair amount of criticism not just from Republicans. Can you explain that comment?”

Rep. Omar noted how Graham’s position had evolved over the past three years before explaining “I am pretty sure that there is something happening with him whether it is something that has to do with his funding when it comes to running for office, whether it has something to do with the polling that they might have in his district or whether it has to do with some sort of leadership within the Senate.”  She then added, “he is somehow compromised to no longer stand up for the truth and to make sure that he is fighting to protect the oath that he took in serving the American people.”

“That is quite a charge to make,” challenged Sciutto, adding, “You say you are pretty sure based on what evidence? That is a remarkable comment to make about a sitting U.S. Senator.”

Omar demurred obliquely, saying “The evidence really is present to us. It’s being presented to us, in the way that he’s behaving.”

Harlow then noted “That’s not evidence. That’s your opinion. Now he is a sitting member of Congress you would have tweeted they got him on this. Again, just based on what evidence, congresswoman?”

Omar resolved with “My tweet was just an opinion based on what I believe to be visible to me. And I’m pretty sure there are lots of Americans who agree on this.”

Watch above via CNN.

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Colby Hall is the Founding Editor of He is also a Peabody Award-winning television producer of non-fiction narrative programming as well as a terrific dancer and preparer of grilled meats.