Sen. Lindsey Graham says he's going to "tie the Senate in knots" until the $50,000 allocated for studying the port in Charleston is reinstated after being stripped from the budget deal. The money was to fund an Army Corps of Engineers study on deepening the port, which Graham says fuels one in five jobs in South Carolin, Talking Points Memo's Susan Crabtree reports.
Graham says he won't block passage of the budget that will prevent a government shutdown because it funds soldiers fighting overseas. But he could slow confirmation on nominees and other legislation, The Hill's Alexander Bolton reports. (Bolton also puts Graham's demands at $40,000.) Vice President Joe Biden called the senator to figure out a compromise.
Talking Points Memo's Benjy Sarlin notes that the dispute puts the Republican in the position of arguing that government spending creates jobs. "Congress, Republicans and Democrats, talk about creating jobs. How can you create jobs by shutting a port down that 260,000 people depend on?" Graham said at a press conference. Tea Party Patriots co-founder Mark Meckler countered that it's cuts in spending that actually creates jobs.
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