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Lindsey Graham Attacks Sen. Leahy for Skipping Judiciary Hearing, Then Finds Out Leahy Was at a Funeral

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) apologized to Senator Pat Leahy (D-VT) on Thursday after chastising his absence at a recent committee hearing because he had a family funeral to attend.

The commotion happened shortly after the committee’s Democratic members accused Graham of getting out of order by calling for a vote on his new immigration and asylum bill without a debate first. Shortly afterwards, Graham accused his Democratic colleagues of stonewalling the committee’s work, skipping meetings and interfering with his ability to do his job.

“For seven weeks I withheld marking up this bill and I got nowhere, and I’m not gonna get anywhere under the current construct until the political system responds differently to what’s going on at the border. What you’re telling me is I should ignore what you did to me last week. I will not. I will work with you as long as I can in good faith, but you’re not going to take my job away from me.”

Graham eventually focused on Leahy in particular, saying “if you tried to work with me for seven weeks on something important to you and me and my crowd did not show up…I don’t think you’d have much choice. You either give up being chairman or you do what I’m doing.”

Leahy responded by saying he was away “because a member of my family was being buried that day. I would note that five Republicans weren’t here. I hope that they weren’t at a funeral too.”

“Duly noted. I apologize … I don’t mean to make it personal, but I was told nobody’s going to come for the expressed purpose, so I could not mark this bill up.”

“I apologize,” Graham responded. “I don’t mean to make it personal … I was informed that nobody was going to show up and it wasn’t because of scheduling problems. So, in the sense of your loss, I’m sorry.”

Watch above, via C-SPAN.

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