Lindsey Graham stands by call for someone in Russia to assassinate Putin

Lindsey Graham, the Republican South Carolina Senator, is standing by his call for someone in Russia to take out the country’s President Vladimir Putin following his invasion of Ukraine.

Mr Graham told TMZ that he was surprised by the negative feedback he has received from both sides of the aisle after he called for someone in Russia to take out Mr Putin.

“I think most Americans understand that Putin is a war criminal – the sooner he’s gone the better,” Mr Graham said as he was leaving a Washington DC airport. “The only way this ends in a sustainable fashion is for the Russian people to take him out. I’m not asking for American boots on the ground, but I want to help Ukraine with military equipment, with assistance, but Putin has gotten away with murder for 20 years – enough is enough, he’s got to go.”

When asked if he stands by what he previously said, Mr Graham said, “totally – 100 per cent”.

Is there a Brutus in Russia? Is there a more successful Colonel Stauffenberg in the Russian military?” Mr Graham tweeted on Thursday.

Roman Marcus Junius Brutus assassinated his friend and Roman dictator Julius Caesar, while German Army Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg is best-known for trying to kill Adolf Hitler in 1944.

“The only way this ends is for somebody in Russia to take this guy out,” the senator added. “You would be doing your country – and the world – a great service.”

“The only people who can fix this are the Russian people,” he added. “Easy to say, hard to do. Unless you want to live in darkness for the rest of your life, be isolated from the rest of the world in abject poverty, and live in darkness, you need to step up to the plate.”

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(Statista/The Independent)

The tweets drew swift pushback from some of the most conservative and liberal members of Congress. Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz called it “an exceptionally bad idea.” Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican who was denounced last week for speaking at an event organized by a white nationalist, said Mr Graham’s tweet was “irresponsible, dangerous & unhinged”. And Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar, a Democrat who has faced criticism over comments about Israel, tweeted: “Seriously, wtf?”

On Friday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki dismissed Mr Graham’s idea out of hand.

“That is not the position of the United States government and certainly not a statement you’d hear come from the mouth of anybody working in this administration,” she said.

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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