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AZ Democratic Party censures Sen. Sinema after blocking voting rights legislation

Posted at 9:55 AM, Jan 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-22 23:58:07-05

PHOENIX — Arizona Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema is growing increasingly isolated from some of her party's most influential officials and donors after playing a key role in scuttling voting rights legislation that many Democrats consider essential to preserving democracy.

On Saturday, leaders of the Arizona Democratic Party voted to censure Sinema.

In a statement released, ADP said that last fall its state committee members passed a resolution outlining potential action be taken by ADP regarding Sinema should she choose to protect the filibuster and obstruct voting rights legislation.

This past week, Senator Sinema did just that, and as a result an Executive Board meeting was held this morning to discuss potential action.

Following the Executive Board meeting this morning, ADP Chair Raquel Terán released the following statement:

"I want to be clear, the Arizona Democratic Party is a diverse coalition with plenty of room for policy disagreements, however on the matter of the filibuster and the urgency to protect voting rights, we have been crystal clear. In the choice between an archaic legislative norm and protecting Arizonans' right to vote, we choose the latter, and we always will. On the heels of their sham 'audit,' Arizona Republicans are already trying to push restrictive legislation to eliminate our popular and long-standing vote-by-mail system, jail election workers, and put Cyber Ninjas in charge of our elections. But this is not just about Arizona. Last year, Republicans in 19 states passed 33 different laws that will make it harder for people to vote."

"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 has no practical consequences but serves as a symbolic condemnation for a woman who just three years ago brought the party an Arizona Senate seat for the first time in a generation.

Several groups are already collecting money for an eventual primary challenge, even though she's not on the ballot until 2024.