An incoherent Sinema defends her unprincipled decision to let Mitch McConnell rule the nation

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, the Arizona Democrat—who apparently has decided that securing the legacy of mavericky John McCain for herself is … doing Sen. Mitch McConnell's work?—chose the eve of the procedural vote on the most consequential legislation for restoring our democracy to double down on her support for the Jim Crow filibuster with an op-ed in The Washington Post. In it she exposes just how unserious she is about this job she has taken on, ignoring history, oblivious to reality, and yet glibly triumphant in declaring principles that are absolute bunk. It mostly boils down to one idea: Democrats shouldn’t pass things because Republicans might rescind them. What that translates into in practice with the For the People Act is that the rights of the Senate minority are more important than the voting rights of millions of Americans. The Senate will vote on a motion to proceed to debate on the bill Tuesday afternoon. "Arizonans expect me to do what I promised when I ran for the House and the Senate: to be independent—like Arizona—and to work with anyone to achieve lasting results," she writes. (They probably also expected her to look out for their economic interests, but look where that got them.) "Lasting results," she continues, "rather than temporary victories, destined to be reversed, undermining the certainty that America’s families and employers depend on." The way to achieve "lasting results," she apparently believes, is gridlock. "The filibuster compels moderation and helps protect the country from wild swings between opposing policy poles," she says. To those who want to eliminate the legislative filibuster to pass the For the People Act (voting-rights legislation I support and have co-sponsored), I would ask: Would it be good for our country if we did, only to see that legislation rescinded a few years from now and replaced by a nationwide voter-ID law or restrictions on voting by mail in federal elections, over the objections of the minority? See how she works in the part where she's co-sponsoring the bill to restore voting rights, while she's working as Mitch McConnell's tool to make sure it doesn't become law? Nice. We can't do good things for the country, she says, because that might make bad things happen. Her argument is really that flimsy. It's also ignoring the reality that Republicans legislatures all over the country—and in some cases gerrymandered majorities—are enacting voter suppression laws with completely partisan votes, shutting the minority Democrats out of the process entirely. But Democrats should stop that from happening now because a theoretical future Republican majority might do what those states are already doing. To those who want to eliminate the legislative filibuster to expand health-care access or retirement benefits: Would it be good for our country if we did, only to later see that legislation replaced by legislation dividing Medicaid into block grants, slashing earned Social Security and Medicare benefits, or defunding women's reproductive health services? She's forgetting that Medicare, Medicaid and other spending programs can be completely eliminated with just 51 votes with a budget reconciliation. And that Republicans used budget reconciliation to jam a repeal of the Affordable Care Act through with a simple majority. Who stopped that? Who stood up against McConnell? John McCain, whose mantle she's trying to assume. The fundamental incoherence here is mind-boggling. The argument goes something like this: Democrats should give the minority Republicans a veto over very popular legislation because it's possible that the new law will be unpopular and elect more Republicans who will reverse the law. So by letting the minority veto bill is preventing them hypothetically repealing that law later. She's arguing that the gridlocked status quo is better than allowing the majority—that was elected by huge majorities in the popular vote—to do what voters elected them to do. That hypothetically any majority shouldn't be able to enact its policies and then stand or fall with the electorate in future elections on the basis of that work. In that, she's disenfranchising voters as much as the Republican legislatures. The voters chose President Joe Biden. The voters chose a Democratic House and Senate—again, with huge popular vote margins. She's nullifying every single vote every Democratic senator received, handing them over to McConnell and the Republicans because . . . bipartisanship. No, really. But bipartisan policies that stand the test of time could help heal our country's divisions and strengthen Americans' confidence that our government is working for all of us and is worthy of all of us. You answer violent insurrectionists and a Republican juggernaut running through the states working to make sure no Democrat ever wins an election again by . . . letting them do it so Republicans like you and let you sit with them at lunch. Sinema has done herself no favors wi

An incoherent Sinema defends her unprincipled decision to let Mitch McConnell rule the nation

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, the Arizona Democrat—who apparently has decided that securing the legacy of mavericky John McCain for herself is … doing Sen. Mitch McConnell's work?—chose the eve of the procedural vote on the most consequential legislation for restoring our democracy to double down on her support for the Jim Crow filibuster with an op-ed in The Washington Post. In it she exposes just how unserious she is about this job she has taken on, ignoring history, oblivious to reality, and yet glibly triumphant in declaring principles that are absolute bunk.

It mostly boils down to one idea: Democrats shouldn’t pass things because Republicans might rescind them. What that translates into in practice with the For the People Act is that the rights of the Senate minority are more important than the voting rights of millions of Americans. The Senate will vote on a motion to proceed to debate on the bill Tuesday afternoon.

"Arizonans expect me to do what I promised when I ran for the House and the Senate: to be independent—like Arizona—and to work with anyone to achieve lasting results," she writes. (They probably also expected her to look out for their economic interests, but look where that got them.) "Lasting results," she continues, "rather than temporary victories, destined to be reversed, undermining the certainty that America’s families and employers depend on." The way to achieve "lasting results," she apparently believes, is gridlock. "The filibuster compels moderation and helps protect the country from wild swings between opposing policy poles," she says.

To those who want to eliminate the legislative filibuster to pass the For the People Act (voting-rights legislation I support and have co-sponsored), I would ask: Would it be good for our country if we did, only to see that legislation rescinded a few years from now and replaced by a nationwide voter-ID law or restrictions on voting by mail in federal elections, over the objections of the minority?

See how she works in the part where she's co-sponsoring the bill to restore voting rights, while she's working as Mitch McConnell's tool to make sure it doesn't become law? Nice. We can't do good things for the country, she says, because that might make bad things happen. Her argument is really that flimsy. It's also ignoring the reality that Republicans legislatures all over the country—and in some cases gerrymandered majorities—are enacting voter suppression laws with completely partisan votes, shutting the minority Democrats out of the process entirely. But Democrats should stop that from happening now because a theoretical future Republican majority might do what those states are already doing.

To those who want to eliminate the legislative filibuster to expand health-care access or retirement benefits: Would it be good for our country if we did, only to later see that legislation replaced by legislation dividing Medicaid into block grants, slashing earned Social Security and Medicare benefits, or defunding women's reproductive health services?

She's forgetting that Medicare, Medicaid and other spending programs can be completely eliminated with just 51 votes with a budget reconciliation. And that Republicans used budget reconciliation to jam a repeal of the Affordable Care Act through with a simple majority. Who stopped that? Who stood up against McConnell? John McCain, whose mantle she's trying to assume.

The fundamental incoherence here is mind-boggling. The argument goes something like this: Democrats should give the minority Republicans a veto over very popular legislation because it's possible that the new law will be unpopular and elect more Republicans who will reverse the law. So by letting the minority veto bill is preventing them hypothetically repealing that law later.

She's arguing that the gridlocked status quo is better than allowing the majority—that was elected by huge majorities in the popular vote—to do what voters elected them to do. That hypothetically any majority shouldn't be able to enact its policies and then stand or fall with the electorate in future elections on the basis of that work. In that, she's disenfranchising voters as much as the Republican legislatures. The voters chose President Joe Biden. The voters chose a Democratic House and Senate—again, with huge popular vote margins. She's nullifying every single vote every Democratic senator received, handing them over to McConnell and the Republicans because . . . bipartisanship. No, really.

But bipartisan policies that stand the test of time could help heal our country's divisions and strengthen Americans' confidence that our government is working for all of us and is worthy of all of us.

You answer violent insurrectionists and a Republican juggernaut running through the states working to make sure no Democrat ever wins an election again by . . . letting them do it so Republicans like you and let you sit with them at lunch.

Sinema has done herself no favors with this effort. She sounds desperately out of touch with the reality of the Trump Republican Party. Like, just clueless. She says she wants to be the next McCain. She can't even touch that. McCain, after all, stood up to McConnell.