Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and former Senator Al Franken (D-MN) made a bet on the winner of the 2024 Presidential election.
The two former colleagues made the wager in an interview on “The Daily Show” Monday night. Toward the end of the segment, Graham and Franken sparred over former President Trump’s legacy and argued whether Trump could beat President Joe Biden in a rematch. Graham said Trump would have to work hard to win back many of his supporters, but bet $20 that he would win.
Graham began the exchange. “Here’s the question for you and maybe others: Trump is trying to come back,” he said. “I think he’s got a better than good chance of winning the primary and a 50/50 chance of being president again.” Franken put his head in his hand, while the audience jeered. “So you’ve got to ask yourself, how can that be?”
“Here’s what I know about this country, about this democracy, about our Constitution,” Franken interjected. “The number one tradition that’s meaningful in this country is the peaceful transition of power. … How then can you want a guy who allowed us to go through this violent insurrection?” he said, referring to the January 6 Capitol riot.
“Well let me just say this — the other side of the story is that when President Trump was president, on the things I care the most about — national security — I thought he did a damn good job,” said Graham, also lauding Trump for negotiating the Abraham Accords, taking out Iranian terrorist leader Qasem Soleimani, securing the southern border, and acheiving energy independence. “So I look at the policies of Trump, and I like the policies of Trump.”
But Graham said that both Trump and Biden would be challenged to prove that they deserve four more years in office. “At the end of the day, [Trump]’s got to prove to people — not me — that he’s able to lead us again. And that will be a challenge for him. And that will be a challenge for Biden to say ‘Give me four more years after the last four.’ We’ll see what happens.”
“Well, l think Biden wins that,” Franken replied.
“Let’s bet. Can we bet?” Graham responded.
“Yeah, how much?” Franken asked.
“Twenty bucks. To be paid here,” Graham said. He then shook Franken’s hand to seal the bet.
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Then on Tuesday morning, Graham knocked Trump for picking a fight with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, and advised him to stop. “If you start this thing, you better be willing to take it,” Graham said in an interview on “Fox & Friends.”
“I don’t like it. Trump’s not into these ‘thou shalt nots.’ That’s not his thing,” he said, referring to the phrase, “Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican,” the so-called “11th Commandment” used by Ronald Reagan during his 1966 campaign for California governor.
“The bottom line is, I think if I were Trump, which I am not, I would be running on four years of being a pretty effective president, ‘the best is yet to come,’” Graham added. “I would say, ‘DeSantis, I picked him out of a crowd. I knew he was talented early on. I’m the guy that saw the talent. He’s been a great governor, but I’m better able to be president the next four years.’ But that ain’t gonna happen.”