Arizona Democrats Censure Sen. Kyrsten Sinema for Blocking Their Voting Rights Legislation

Sen. Krysten Sinema, D-Ariz., ask questions of the panel during a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee on conditions at the Southern border, Tuesday, July 30, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Arizona’s Democrat Party on Saturday formally censured Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) for blocking the party’s voting-rights legislation.

The move left the question of whether the party will support her if she runs again in 2024, 12 News reported.

The party’s Executive Board approved the censure prior to its annual convention being held Saturday.

Party chairwoman state Sen. Raquel Teran of west Phoenix, wrote in a statement, “As a party, our job is to support our Democratic candidates, and we appreciate Senator Sinema’s leadership in passing the American Rescue Plan and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law”:

However, we are also here to advocate for our constituents and the ramifications of failing to pass federal legislation that protects their right to vote are too large and far-reaching. While we take no pleasure in this announcement, the ADP Executive Board has decided to formally censure Senator Sinema as a result of her failure to do whatever it takes to ensure the health of our democracy.

The move was based on a resolution in the fall, placing Sinema on notice, the 12 News article read, adding:

The resolution warned that if she didn’t vote to reform the U.S. Senate’s filibuster rule to help pass Democrats’ voting-rights legislation, the party’s executive board would have the power to issue a vote of no confidence or issue a formal censure.

Sinema’s recent vote to uphold the Senate’s filibuster rule aided in killing the legislation.

Breitbart News reported Wednesday the Senate blocked Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) late-night effort to nuke the filibuster and pass a pair of “voter bills.”

“The Senate voted on Schumer’s motion to overrule the legislative filibuster; the motion failed 48-52. Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), two moderate Democrats oppose to the reform, voted against Schumer’s gambit,” the outlet said.

Sinema noted in a statement afterward that “I also maintained my longstanding opposition to separate actions that would deepen our divisions and risk repeated radical reversals in federal policy, cementing uncertainty and further eroding confidence in our government.”

Democrats were turning against Sinema in the 2024 primary with nearly three-quarters expressing a desire to replace her with another Democrat, according to a Public Opinion Pulse (AZPOP) survey OH Predictive Insights (OHPI) released in November.

“While the survey found Sinema’s favorability nearly split among all respondents, 42 percent viewing her favorably and 45 percent viewing her unfavorably, she tends to be more popular among Republicans than members of her own party, who seek to oust her,” Breitbart News reported.

The senator’s office issued a statement in response to the recent censure, noting that “During three terms in the U.S. House, and now in the Senate, Kyrsten has always promised Arizonans she would be an independent voice for the state — not for either political party.”

“She’s delivered for Arizonans and has always been honest about where she stands,” it concluded.

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