Facing some epic backlash, Sinema finally meets with a key Democrat in the House

Facing some epic backlash, Sinema finally meets with a key Democrat in the House

It’s been a banner week for Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.

Five members of her veterans advisory council resigned Thursday in disgust, saying, “We’re appalled by your failure,” and accusing her of “hanging your constituents out to dry.” Veterans are an important constituency to Sinema, and the TV ad one of those vets flaying her was a nice touch.

But that wasn’t all. One of Sinema’s one-time allies, Rep. Ruben Gallego of Arizona, declined to rule out primarying her in 2024 when asked by CNN.

“I think the sentiment that I’m hearing out there, voters in Arizona are upset with her, especially Democratic voters,” Gallego told CNN on Wednesday. “I think they support the President’s agenda, and they hope that she will, in the end, support the President’s agenda, pass reconciliation—the Build Back Better agenda.”

Pressed on a potential Senate bid challenging Sinema, Gallego offered, “For me, all I care about is what happens between now and 2022.” Of course, multiple progressive efforts have already been launched to build support for ousting Sinema, including a “draft Gallego” campaign.

Many of Sinema’s Democratic counterparts in the House have also had it with her.

“There is a sense in which we no longer live in a democracy; we live under the tyranny of Kyrsten Sinema,” said liberal Rep. Ritchie Torres of New York. “I welcome the ideological diversity of the party. I can live with dissent. My colleagues and I have trouble living with what we perceive to be erraticism. The perception of erraticism is brought on by a lack of communication and clarity for where she stands.”

The pressure may have at least shaken something loose. Sinema reportedly met with House Ways and Means Chair Richard Neal of Massachusetts Thursday and, well, talked to him—which is apparently rather unusual.

“The fact that Sinema met with Neal is different because she’s been [dealing] directly with the WH — and not with members,” tweeted CNN’s Manu Raju.

The two talked taxes and tax hikes. Neal took the lead in the House on crafting the pay fors in the $3.5 trillion deal before it was recently scaled back to roughly $2 trillion.

“She listened to what I had to say. She didn’t say no, she just listened to what I had to say,” Neal explained of their meeting. But Neal also said Sinema never explained her rationale for opposing tax hikes on corporations and wealthy individuals.

At a CNN town hall later on Thursday, President Joe Biden said Sinema “will not raise a single penny of taxes on the corporate side and/or on wealthy people. Period. That’s where it sort of breaks down.” The White House and Democrats are now devising other means for funding the bill.

But overall, Neal viewed their meeting as positive—a “really good” conversation.

Ultimately, Neal thinks Sinema wants the bill to pass. “She said that to me,” he noted, “She said ‘I agree with you. This has got to pass.’”

From Daily Kos at Read More. This article is republished from DailyKos under an open content license. Read the original article at DailyKos.

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