Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona just put an end to Chuck Schumer’s latest stunt and Pelosi’s dream of passing a new voting bill while sending a message to Nancy that to get big, controversial bills passed she will need to be bipartisan. The pressure has intense for Sinema and Joe Manching to cave and put an end to the filibuster so Chuck and Nancy can ram through bills unopposed. So Sinema took a public stand yesterday to put the rumors to rest and said she will not end the filibuster.
She wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post saying she will keep the filibuster come hell or high water because it ‘compels moderation” and helps the country avoid radical policy changes from one admin to the next.
“Instability, partisanship, and tribalism continue to infect our politics,” Sinema wrote. “The solution, however, is not to continue weakening our democracy’s guardrails. If we eliminate the Senate’s 60-vote threshold, we will lose much more than we gain.”
She continued: “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“Would it be good for our country if we did, only to see that legislation rescinded a few years from now and replaced by a nationwide voter-ID law or restrictions on voting by mail in federal elections, over the objections of the minority?
“It’s no secret that I oppose eliminating the Senate’s 60-vote threshold.
“I held the same view during three terms in the U.S. House and said the same after I was elected to the Senate in 2018.
“If anyone expected me to reverse my position because my party now controls the Senate, they should know that my approach to legislating in Congress is the same whether in the minority or majority.”
Sinema reminded the left that it was the filibuster the Dems used to block a police reform and a COVID-19 relief bill, which forced GOP senators back to the negotiating table. Bipartisan policies, she wrote, “stand the test of time” and bolster Americans’ confidence in government.”
“My support for retaining the 60-vote threshold is not based on the importance of any particular policy. It is based on what is best for our democracy,” she wrote.
“The filibuster compels moderation and helps protect the country from wild swings between opposing policy poles.”
From The Hill:
Sinema’s op-ed comes one day before the Senate will hold a vote on trying to advance the For the People Act, a sweeping bill to overhaul federal elections. Sinema supports the bill, but it is guaranteed to fail to advance because of a GOP filibuster.
If Democrats are able to unite their own caucus behind the bill — something that is unclear as Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) goes down to the wire on his decision — it’s expected to pour fuel onto calls for Democrats to nix the filibuster.
Filibuster reform advocates have been adamant that Republicans blocking the For the People Act on the Senate floor could move Democratic holdouts toward changing or getting rid of the legislative filibuster.
Sinema, however, poured cold water on that warning that if Democrats followed through with that Republicans, once back in the majority, could roll the bill back and replace it with “a nationwide voter-ID law or restrictions on voting by mail in federal elections.”
While reiterating that she doesn’t support getting rid of the 60-vote legislative filibuster, Sinema did call for the Senate to publicly debate it.
“It is time for the Senate to debate the legislative filibuster, so senators and our constituents can hear and fully consider the concerns and consequences. Hopefully, senators can then focus on crafting policies through open legislative processes and amendments, finding compromises that earn broad support,” Sinema wrote.
The craziest thing about this Sinema op-Ed isn’t what’s in it.— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) June 22, 2021
It’s that 40 of her fellow Democrats held the SAME position on the filibuster 2 years ago, flipped completely the second they got power, and media is mostly treating it like it’s NBD.https://t.co/TV61VcWcDP