Sinema’s move to independence is driven by ‘political aspirations’, says Senator Bernie Sanders
Senator Kyrsten Sinema’s decision to leave the Democratic Party was driven by “political aspirations for Arizona’s future,” Senator Bernie Sanders said Sunday.
“I suspect it probably has a lot to do with politics in Arizona,” Sanders, a Vermont independent who caucus with Democrats, said in an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I think the Democrats over there aren’t too keen on someone who helped sabotage some of the most important legislation that protects the interests of working families and the right to vote and so on.”
Along with fellow centrist Sen. Joe Manchin, DW.Va., Sinema held strong bargaining power over Democratic priorities in an evenly divided Senate. “It’s a Democratic enterprise that actually, along with Senator Manchin, sabotaged extremely important legislation,” said Sanders, a prominent progressive lawmaker.
Sinema’s announcement to register as an independent came just days after Democrats reached a 51-49 majority in the Senate following Sen. Raphael Warnock’s victory in Georgia’s runoff election. which enlarged the party’s narrowest majority.
However, she said she intends to keep her committee seats awarded to her by the Democrats, meaning the party will still have a clear majority and full committee control, an aide told the Democratic leadership at NBC News.
In a recent interview on CNN, Sinema said she doesn’t want to “be attached to the partisanship that dominates politics today.” “I think the Americans have had enough. I think Arizonans have had enough,” she said. “National political parties have taken our politics further than I have ever seen.”
Sinema added: “I want to remove some of that kind of – that poison from our politics.”
While some Democratic senators criticized Sinema’s decision to leave the Democratic Party, Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., shared a less critical view of his decision during an appearance on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.” .
“I had a good experience working with Kyrsten on a number of different topics, especially the bipartisan infrastructure package,” Tester said, adding that he doesn’t think it matters if Sinema is a Democrat or a Republican. as long as she “wants to get things” in Congress.