Democratic senator faces censure for confirming Trump officials

Democratic Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema is facing possible censure from the liberal caucus of her own state's Democratic Party for "failing to support the tenets of the 2016 Democratic Party Platform."

"The 2016 platform of the Democratic Party states that Democrats support progress toward more accountable governance and universal rights," the censure resolution from the caucus reads, which will be considered Saturday at the party's quarterly meeting. "As autocrats and strongmen around the world crack down on civil society and imprison those who speak out to demand greater freedom, we will continue to bolster groups and individuals who fight for fundamental human rights, democracy, and rule of law."

The resolution goes on to delineate the reasons why Sinema has, in the estimation of the caucus, failed to live up to those tenets when she voted to confirm Attorney General William Barr and Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt, as well as neglecting to co-sponsor legislation that would reinstate net neutrality rules.

Dan O'Neal, a signatory of the resolution who is a state coordinator for the Progressive Democrats of America, explained to the Arizona Republic how the censure is a well-intentioned chastisement meant to return Sinema to the liberal base of the party. "Here’s the thing: We really support Kyrsten Sinema, we want her to succeed, we want her to be the best senator in the country. But the way she is voting is really disappointing. We want Democrats to vote like Democrats and not Republicans."

Arizona Democratic Party Chairwoman Felecia Rotellini is uncertain if the resolution will pass and qualified that "we are a very diverse group and that means diversity of thought, as well."

Dismissing the idea that censuring one of their own indicates a fissure within the party, Rotellini said, "I think it’s an indication of a group of people who think differently and have a different perspective on the same topic.”

Sinema has voted in tandem with Trump's legislative agenda more than half the time during her career, according to FiveThirtyEight. She has distinguished herself as a moderate voice within the Democratic Party that has sometimes broken with its far-left positions on immigration, climate change, judges, and foreign policy.

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