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Graham Doubles Down on Calling for Putin’s Assassination, Compares to Hitler

  • Lindsey Graham doubled down on calling for Putin to be assassinated by his own people.
  • “If John McCain were here, he’d be saying the same thing, I think,” said Graham. 
  • Graham previously drew criticism even from the right flank of his party by calling for Putin’s death.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina reiterated his call on Wednesday for Russian President Vladimir Putin’s assassination, comparing the Russian president to Adolf Hitler.

“Yeah, I hope he’ll be taken out, one way or the other,” said Graham when asked whether he stood by earlier calls for Putin’s death. “I don’t care how they take him out.”

Graham held a press conference following Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s address to members of Congress, in order to tout a resolution urging President Joe Biden to authorize the transfer of Polish MiG planes to Ukraine amid the Russian invasion.

The Biden administration has resisted authorizing the transfer, fearing that it would escalate tensions with Russia.

Graham said that the late Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona, a long-time friend of Graham who else held hawkish views on national security and foreign policy, would agree with him.

“If John McCain were here, he’d be saying the same thing, I think,” said Graham. “It’s time for him to go. He’s a war criminal. I wish somebody had taken Hitler out in the [1930s].”


The South Carolina Republican also clarified that he did not want US forces to carry out Putin’s assassination.

“Vladimir Putin is not a legitimate leader, he is a war criminal. He needs to be dealt with by the Russian people,” he said. “I’m not asking to invade Russia to take them out. I’m not asking to send American ground forces into Ukraine to fight the Russian army. I am asking the Russian people to rise up and end this reign of terror for you and the world at large.”

Graham first called for Putin’s assassination on March 4, making a Julius Caesar reference in asking “Is there a Brutus in Russia?”

That quickly drew criticism even from the party’s right-ward flank, with Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia assailing Graham’s position.

Greene called Graham “unhinged” while implying he was a “blood thirsty warmongering” politician.

And Cruz said Graham’s suggestion was an “exceptionally bad idea.”




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