"If anybody was listening to who I am and what I said you know that it was with deep sarcasm that I suggested that some legislative body would want to yearn for the good old days of segregationism. The point that I'm trying to make is there is nobody in America in the legislative arena, wanting to take us back to that dark period in American history," Graham said. "I want to assure the people of South Carolina, that statement was made with dripping sarcasm."
His opponent, Democrat Jaime Harrison, tweeted: "@LindseyGrahamSC just called segregation “the good old days.” The good old days for who, Senator? It’s 2020, not 1920. Act like it."
Recent polls have shown a tight race between Harrison and Graham, who ran against President Donald Trump in the 2016 White House Republican primary but is now one of his closest allies in Congress. Trump won South Carolina by 14 percentage points in 2016.