After watching NBC’s Commander-in-Chief forum on Wednesday night, Lindsey Graham is mulling a move to Canada.
The Republican senator from South Carolina had nothing positive to say Thursday about either presidential candidate’s performance during the forum, which focused on foreign policy issues, and again distanced himself from his party’s nominee.
“It makes me want to move to Canada,” Graham told reporters at the Capitol.
Despite having some positive expectations for her, Graham wasn’t impressed with Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s performance, calling her “defensive.”
“I thought her idea of we don’t need any troops in Iraq and Syria ― even though we got 7,000 in Iraq and probably close to a thousand in Syria ― was disappointing,” Graham said.
But Graham, who has served in Congress since 1995, saved most of his criticisms for Donald Trump.
“In terms of competency, I think Trump fell way short,” Graham said. “You’re running to be the leader of the free world, and if you find admiration of Vladimir Putin, then I’m not with you.”
“I don’t understand how any candidate to be leader of the free world could praise Putin, who’s a thug and an autocratic dictator,” Graham continued.
Graham had similarly harsh words in a later scrum with reporters. “I think this is the biggest miscalculation since people thought Hitler was a good guy,” he said of Trump’s kind words for Putin, according to Bloomberg.
Trump reiterated his belief that the Russian president is “very much of a leader” when pressed on Putin’s attempts to undermine U.S. influence in key regions and his annexation of Crimea.
“He’s been a leader far more than our president has been a leader,” Trump said.