WASHINGTON — Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham says he told President Donald Trump that ending the Russia probe could hurt the GOP's chances in the midterm elections.

The South Carolina senator, who golfed with Trump over the weekend, says he advised the president, "You just got to ride it out."

Graham told the president he understood he feels "put upon" by special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. But he cautioned that ending it would drown out the Republican message ahead of November.

"If we stop the Mueller probe tomorrow you won't be able to talk about anything else," Graham said.

The senator recounted the story Monday as he fielded audience questions at a GOP event in Greenville, South Carolina.