Former President Donald Trump clapped back at Sen. Lindsey Graham after the South Carolina Republican chastised him over a comment regarding some Jan. 6 protesters.
At his rally on Saturday in Conroe, Texas, Trump pledged to pardon some who took part in the protest at the U.S. Capitol Building.
“If I run and if I win, we will treat those people from Jan. 6 fairly. We will treat them fairly,” he said. “And if it requires pardons, we will give them pardons. Because they are being treated so unfairly.”
Dozens of people arrested shortly after entering the Capitol remain in custody a year later, having been denied bail and with no court date yet scheduled.
“If that requires pardons, we will give them pardons, because they are being treated so unfairly,” the former president noted.
“This hasn’t happened to all of the other atrocities that took place recently, what that un-select committee is doing and what the people are doing who are running those prisons — it’s a disgrace,” he argued. “We will treat them fairly and we will take care of the people of this country.”
But Graham said on Sunday he didn’t think much of that idea.
“I don’t want to send any signal that it was OK to defile the Capitol. There are other groups with causes that may want to go down to the violent path that these people get pardoned,” he told CBS News’ “Face The Nation.”
Lindsey Graham On President Trump Promising To Pardon January 6th Political Prisoners: “I think it’s inappropriate.”
— The Columbia Bugle 🏁
“Yeah. Well, I think it’s inappropriate. I don’t want to reinforce that defiling the Capitol was OK. I don’t want to do anything that would make this more likely in the future.
“And just let me finish my thought here. When Kamala Harris and her associates and the people that work for her, her staffers, raised money to bail out the rioters who hit cops in the head and burned down stores.,” he said.
“I didn’t like that either. So I don’t want to do anything from raising bail to pardoning people who take the law into their own hands because it will make more violence more likely. I want to deter people who did what … on January the 6th. And those who did it, I hope they go to jail and get the book thrown at them because they deserve it,” the senator said.
Trump, in turn, has responded to Graham’s statements in an interview with Newsmax TV’s Rob Schmidt.
“Well, Lindsey Graham’s wrong. I mean, Lindsey’s a nice guy, but he’s a RINO. Lindsey’s wrong,” Trump said after the host asked him his opinion of the South Carolina Republican’s remarks.
“I would absolutely be prepared, and Lindsey Graham doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about, if he says that, because you have to have equal justice,” Trump added. “It’s very, very unfair what’s happened to this group of people.”
“These people are being treated horribly,” he continued. “I would absolutely – because some of them are being treated very unfairly – yeah, I would absolutely give them a pardon, if things don’t work out fairly.”
“Out of proportion? Like 20 times out of proportion,” Trump said of the charges leveled against many of the protesters. “These people are being persecuted.”