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Elizabeth Warren: Democrats Are ‘the Party of Opposition’

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said the Democratic Party is “the party of opposition” on Wednesday and stated her commitment to fighting tooth and nail to prevent President Donald Trump’s “terrible” cabinet picks from being confirmed.

“Democrats have the minority in the House, the minority in the Senate. But that does not make us the minority party,” Warren said in an interview with MSNBC. She added, “We are the party of opposition, and that is our job. But our tools are very limited. We don’t have the capacity to stop Jeff Sessions if all the Republicans lock arms.”

Warren’s statement arrived hours after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) voted to stop her from reading remarks from 1986 that were critical of Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R-AL) on the Senate floor that stood in violation of Senate Rule XIX, with her characterization of Sessions as a disgrace to the Justice Department.

McConnell told presiding officer Sen. Steven Daines (R-MT) that Warren, an attorney and Harvard Law School professor, “impugned the motives and conduct of our colleague from Alabama as warned by the chair. Senator Warren, quote-said, ‘Sessions has used the awesome power of his office to chill the free exercise of the vote by black citizens.’ I call the Senate to order under the provisions of Rule XIX.”

Daines ruled that Warren was out of order, and the Senate voted 49-to-43 for sustaining the ruling of the chair, followed by a 50-to-42 vote preventing Warren from continuing her floor speech:

Sessions was confirmed as President Trump’s first attorney general on Wednesday with a 52-to-47 vote. Sen. Sessions voted “present.”

Also on Wednesday, Betsy Devos addressed the Department of Education for the first time since being sworn in as Trump’s education secretary the day before.

Vice President Mike Pence cast a historic vote to break the Senate’s 50-50 vote for Trump’s controversial nominee.

“We just don’t have the votes to be able to stop them if all the Republicans stick together and vote through these terrible nominees,” Warren told MSNBC of Devos.

“And that, in fact, is exactly what they are doing. They are cramming terrible nominees down the throats of the American people.” Warren added that the Democrats’ tool is “the grassroots” America. “It’s the people who say, ‘Wait a minute, this is too far. No, we cannot do this in America.'”

The day after Warren was silenced, former Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) took the Senate floor to read the 1986 letter Coretta Scott King wrote opposing Sessions’ nomination to a federal judgeship:

Senators Tom Udall (D-NM), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) also read King’s letter from the Senate floor without rejection from Republicans.

Warren took to social media in a series of tweets to reaffirm her commitment to opposing the Republican Party:

Hours after Warren attempted to use the words of Martin Luther King Jr’s widow to smear Sessions, a video surfaced showing the late Coretta Scott King praising Sessions at the Rosa Parks Library and Museum in December 2000.

Furthermore, in an interview with Neil Cavuto on Fox Business Network this week, Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., said Warren used King’s named to “play the race card.”

“It’s almost like a bait and switch, stir up the emotions, in the name of King—and my name is Alveda King … [and] play the race card, which she was attempting to do.”

“In that letter [Coretta Scott King] would be referring to some of [Sen. Jeff Sessions] comments. However, she would agree today that he, of course, ended some [school segregation and] he worked to prosecute members of the KKK.” She added, “Our family—we are peacemakers, we bring people together. … We do not divide people.”

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter and Periscope @AdelleNaz.


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