Kyrsten Sinema Defends Opposition to Filibuster-Busting

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Az) defended her opposition to ending the filibuster in a Washington Post op-ed on Monday night, saying that doing so would “weaken democracy’s guardrails.”

There are growing calls from progressives to end the filibuster as the Senate votes today on voting rights, a bill destined to fail without a single Republican vote, and it’s still unclear whether Joe Manchin will support the bill. Sinema said abolishing the filibuster would cause us to “lose much more than we would gain.”

She writes:

Arizonans expect me to do what I promised when I ran for the House and the Senate: to be independent — like Arizona — and to work with anyone to achieve lasting results.  Lasting results — rather than temporary victories, destined to be reversed, undermining the certainty that America’s families and employers depend on.  The best way to achieve durable, lasting results? Bipartisan cooperation.

"My support for retaining the 60-vote threshold is not based on the importance of any particular policy. It is based on what is best for our democracy. The filibuster compels moderation and helps protect the country from wild swings between opposing policy poles," she continued.

Sinema did call for the Senate to debate the 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,” Sinema wrote. 

Sinema and Manchin are on the record opposed to eliminating the filibuster, but Sinema alludes to other Democratic Senators wary of making changes, as well as President Biden.

And to those who fear that Senate rules will change anyway as soon as the Senate majority changes: I will not support an action that damages our democracy because someone else did so previously or might do so in the future. I do not accept a new standard by which important legislation can only pass on party-line votes — and when my party is again in the Senate minority, I will work just as hard to preserve the right to shape legislation.

Axios and The Hill