Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina says Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump has managed to consolidate support from those in the GOP who think President Obama is a Muslim and from those who think Mr. Obama was born outside the United States.
“Well, he’s consolidated all Republicans who think Obama’s a Muslim … and that he was born in Kenya,” Mr. Graham, a 2016 GOP presidential candidate, said Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
“So whatever bloc that is [is] what he’s got,” Mr. Graham said. “And I’m going for the other crowd. I’m going for the crowd that says, OK, I think he’s a Christian, I believe he was born in Hawaii, but he’s a bad president and he’s been a very poor commander in chief.”
A poll released Tuesday by the Democratic-leaning firm Public Policy Polling showed Mr. Trump in first place among the GOP presidential contenders at 29 percent, followed by retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson at 15 percent.
The poll also said more than 60 percent of Trump supporters said they believe Mr. Obama is a Muslim and that he was born outside the United States.
Mr. Trump has mentioned Mr. Graham, who has failed to gain much traction in public polling on the race, as an example of what happens to candidates who have come after him. He read Mr. Graham’s cellphone number aloud at a rally in the senator’s home state in July after Mr. Graham had referred to Mr. Trump as a “jackass.”