Sinema Defends Filibuster, Calls Out Hypocrisy from Her Party

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Posted: Jun 22, 2021 8:35 AM
Sinema Defends Filibuster, Calls Out Hypocrisy from Her Party

Source: AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

Writing in the pages of The Washington Post, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema defended her belief in bipartisanship and called out members of her party for their hypocrisy on wanting to eliminate the legislative filibuster.   

“Once in a majority, it is tempting to believe you will stay in the majority,” Sinema wrote. “But a Democratic Senate minority used the 60-vote threshold just last year to filibuster a police reform proposal and a covid-relief bill that many Democrats viewed as inadequate. Those filibusters were mounted not as attempts to block progress, but to force continued negotiations toward better solutions.”

The Arizona Democrat noted that her position has not changed on the filibuster whether her party is in the majority or not because she believes it’s “best for our democracy.” 

The filibuster, she argues, pushes the Senate toward moderation and helps prevent “wild swings between opposing policy poles.”  

As Matt Whitlock observed, “The craziest thing about this Sinema op-Ed" is that dozens of her colleagues held the same view recently.

Good-faith arguments have been made both criticizing and defending the Senate’s 60-vote threshold. I share the belief expressed in 2017 by 31 Senate Democrats opposing elimination of the filibuster — a belief shared by President Biden. While I am confident that several senators in my party still share that belief, the Senate has not held a debate on the matter.

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. (WaPo)

Others like National Review's Charlie Cooke encouraged the left to move on. 

"Instability, partisanship and tribalism continue to infect our politics. 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," Sinema concluded.