SC’s Lindsey Graham planning to speak to Trump this weekend about GOP future, unity

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Emily Bohatch
·2 min read
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U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham will visit former President Donald Trump this weekend to discuss the Republican Party’s future, the South Carolinian told reporters Friday.

One of Trump’s staunchest allies who has backed him still after the Capitol riots, Graham said the party needs to focus on unity heading into the 2022 elections, when several House and Senate seats will be up for grabs.

That includes South Carolina’s other Republican senator, Tim Scott, down to state level elections.

“We need to get the party together as much as possible,” Graham said.

Republicans are seeking to win back the majority in the House in 2022 after Democrats kept control in the House after November and won back the Senate.

Republicans lost the majority in the House in 2018, when a wave of Democrats were elected to the chamber in the first major election since Trump’s 2016 victory. Though Democrats still hold a majority in the House, Republicans flipped a dozen House seats back in their favor last year, narrowing the gap in the House to 211 Republicans to 221 Democrats.

Graham said Republican infighting ahead of the election would prove disastrous for the party.

“The worst possible outcome for the Republican Party would be to argue among itself,” Graham said.

Graham is not the only South Carolina Republican focused on boosting his party’s numbers in 2022.

U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace, R-Daniel Island, was named vice chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee for the 2022 cycle as part of a group focused on winning seats for the GOP.

The Republican Party is dealing with division in the aftermath of Trump leaving office, part of which was severely aggravated by the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol where a mob of Trump supporters breached the government building as House members and Senators worked inside.

Factions of the party are divided on whether to embrace Trump or whether to reject him outright.

Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who was tapped by Trump to serve as the United Nations ambassador, has said the former president “lost any sort of political viability he was going to have” after the Capitol riot. Haley, considered a frontrunner in the 2024 presidential election, was then denied a meeting with Trump this week.

Those divisions were especially apparent during Trump’s subsequent impeachment and Senate trial.

A number of Republicans crossed party lines to vote to impeach and convict Trump, including South Carolina’s U.S. Rep. Tom Rice, R-Myrtle Beach.