How Lindsey Graham’s shenanigans in Georgia could backfire — and cost the GOP the US Senate

How Lindsey Graham’s shenanigans in Georgia could backfire — and cost the GOP the US Senate
U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, left, listens as Defense Secretary Ash Carter testifies on the Defense Department's proposed fiscal year 2017 budget before the Senate Armed Services Committee in Washington, D.C., March 17, 2016. DoD photo by Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz

The Washington Post's Amy Gardner broke the news story reverberating around the internet Monday: that Georgia's Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, revealed that Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) pressured him to toss thousands of valid ballots — and even suggested blocking entire counties from having their mail-in ballots counted. Gardner spoke with Chris Hayes Monday night about why she thought the Republicans' angst might backfire – and cost the GOP the Senate.

"I think he thinks the Republicans aren't being very smart here," Gardner said. "The argument for all of this wrath coming down on his head and also just sort of the rhetoric that impugns the election officials arguably is to help [Republican senators from Georgia] Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue who have the runoff election on Jan. 5 because everybody knows Donald Trump is still talking about fraud even though there's been no evidence to suggest that any one of these close states that decided the outcome had any widespread fraud on a measurable level."

She continued, "So the fear is that Donald Trump is going to tweet something. He's going to tweet displeasure at Sens. Loeffler and Purdue – some of the other Republicans who see this election being administered fairly, legally, ethically, I think their view is that's not smart politically, that sort of casting doubt on the election is a distraction that does the opposite of unify the Republican party at a time they need to get all of their voters out again just in a few short weeks."

Gardner added, "And one of the biggest accusations of alleged fraud going on in Georgia is the manufacturer of the voting machines of dominion voting systems is [a leftist] Venezuela company that stole votes from Donald Trump in Georgia. That is causing Republicans to say, hmm, I don't know if I want to use these machines on Jan. 5. Everyone is saying these machines are terrible. It doesn't seem very smart for the Republicans either."

Watch the video below.

Georgia Senate runoffs

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