Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) took aim at several unnamed Republican senators on Monday night, telling Fox News’ Tucker Carlson that many of his GOP colleagues are more loyal to the so-called “Deep State” than to the president while criticizing Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) for not doing more to investigate Democrats.
Noting at the top of his primetime Fox News broadcast that Graham promised to use his chairmanship of the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee to get to the bottom of the Russia investigation, Carlson groused that the South Carolina lawmaker hadn’t made any progress exposing the “bureaucratic coup” against President Donald Trump.
“So far, Graham’s tenure has been defined by total inaction,” Carlson grumbled. “He has subpoenaed neither [former Deputy FBI Director Andrew] McCabe nor [ex-Deputy Attorney General Rod] Rosenstein, nor has he launched an investigation. Now his inaction extends to the Ukraine saga.”
Paul, meanwhile, claimed that he has urged Graham both publicly and privately to open up investigations and bring in people such as former CIA Director John Brennan and former British counterintelligence officer Christopher Steele to testify about the origins of the Russia probe.
“So everything the Democrats have accused President Trump of doing, you know, investigating a political rival with a foreign country, all those same questions should be asked of the Democrats,” Paul exclaimed. “Did they do that to Trump?”
Carlson wanted to know why Graham hasn’t moved on opening a Senate investigation into this, prompting Paul to say that the South Carolina lawmaker needs to exercise his power.
“We’ve been waiting a long time on this,” Paul continued. “Some people, I’m not going to say Senator Graham, but there are other Republican senators up here whose allegiance is more to the Deep State than it is to the president. I do think Senator Graham does like the president and wants to get to the bottom of it, but a lot of us want to see it get started. We want to see subpoenas.”
The Fox News host went on to complain that Graham hasn’t looked into the FBI raid on Trump associate Roger Stone’s house, implying that then-Special Counsel Robert Mueller tipped off CNN ahead of time. (CNN has contended that this is untrue.)
“He needs to use his clout, and only he can do it,” Paul replied.
Carlson would then ask Paul if Graham’s neoconservative views on foreign policy have caused him to possibly slow-walk the investigations, wondering if Graham’s disagreements with Trump on Syria are affecting his decisions.
“There is an establishment in foreign policy and also in the intelligence community,” Paul noted. “The intelligence community truly is the Deep State.”
The Kentucky senator concluded that he and Graham have had disagreements in the past over FISA warrants, adding that Graham wants to continue having them issued in private.
“There may be a concern that if we look at the intelligence Deep State, that as we find out things, some of their power may diminish,” He said.
Carlson, meanwhile, wasn’t the only pro-Trump Fox personality who railed against Graham—typically a reliable supporter of the president—on Monday night. During his Fox Business broadcast, Lou Dobbs called Graham an “embarrassment” who hasn’t “lifted a finger” to help Trump.