Independent Senators? Part II

    (Part I is here.)

    CIA veteran Evan McMullin has launched a U.S. Senate campaign in Utah — as an independent — to oust Republican Mike Lee.

    — Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) October 5, 2021

    more after the jump


    copied from Part I

    commentary related to topic by Sinema & AOC

    I believe this is partly reference to the work by the House Problem Solvers Caucus (which is truly bipartisan, having equal number of Democrat & GOP members listed here. Here is their announcement of  "Building Bridges: A Bipartisan Physical Infrastructure Framework" from June 9.

    Then see 

    Sinema Cueing Up To Go Indy (Must Read)

    By  @ Talking Points Memo, September 21, 2021

    Absolutely fascinating look at Kyrsten Sinema’s efforts to position herself as an independent in Arizona, possibly formally but definitely in effect. It makes pretty clear she’s not done with politics or angling for a high dollar lobbying gig, as some speculate. She thinks she can be a latter-day McCain and build her political brand on that basis, likely looking for a promotion above the Senate. TPM Reader GT, a registered independent in Arizona, walks us through the view from in-state as well as the mailers he’s been getting on Sinema’s behalf from something called the “Center Forward” PAC run out of New Jersey and chaired by former Alabama Rep. Bud Cramer (D) [....]

    On the following AOC tweets, do note Sept. 2 date:

    What s it that Sinema wants taken out of the bills?

    Not interested in doing your work for you if that's what you want to figure out.I believe you with the Infrastructer bill youhave to compare the bipartisan plan from the Problem Solver's Caucus site with the Democratic plan. And as far as the budget bill I never understand those and don't plan to start.

    She's still tweeting about it:

    The pandemic highlighted the need for high-speed broadband in every corner of Arizona. Our bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act invests $65 billion in broadband expansion and access -- creating economic opportunities and connecting Arizona communities.

    — Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) October 4, 2021

    LET ME BE CLEAR: I am not interested in political activist debate and attacking individual senators like you are. I am only interested in figuring out what Senators are up to in general.

    I am seeing a trend of lot of them acting independently from party, and in a bipartisan fashion. That is interesting to me as it is the role the founders thought they would play: basically a grownup counter to the rowdy, populist, partisan House.

    If you can find someone to bitch about with as regards individual senators ruining your expectations, you are welcome to do it with them on this thread, it's just not going to be me. I have no use for that kind of input. Especially on a little place like dagblog where no one is going to change minds and there is no one with power reading. That strikes me as absurd.

    I'm not here to defend any of them. I just very much dislike inaccurate political activist spin on what they are actually doing, that doesn't help me understand anything about reality.

    I simply asked for clarification on what led her to hold up the bills.

    Regarding bipartisanship, it seems the "bipartisan" Republicans are willing to risk the financial status of the country by refusing to address the debt ceiling.

    You see adults in the Senate, I do not.

    Edit to add:

    There are so many "adults" in the Senate that President Biden is floating the "nuclear option" as a carve out to address the debt ceiling.

    So much for bipartisanship 

    Regarding political activism

    I criciticized two Democrats and I criticized the Republicans.

    Edit to add:

    You are tied to the illusion of bipartisanship 

    You are blind to the efforts of Republicans in state governments to be able to overturn the results of a legal election 

    Simultaneously, Republicans are gerrymandering to suppress votes.

    Since only one viable political party believes in Democracy, I'm proud to be a Democratic Party member.

    I can still criticize Democrats for failing to pass bills that counter voter suppression and push for police reform.

    Deal with it: I'm with the 41%. You partisans are with 29% vs. 29%

    I'm comfortable with the numbers. If the Democrats can't get legislation that addresses voter suppression, a pox on their house.

    If the 41% are ignoring an attempt to put authoritarians in office, I'm glad that I am with the 29%.

    You are winning, why so upset?

    Edit to add:

    Machin will not support the proposed votings rights bill because there is no bipartisanship 

    Sen. Joe Manchin praised a Tuesday morning meeting with civil rights leaders, calling it "constructive" and "informative," but maintained his opposition to a sweeping set of election overhaul measures known as the For the People Act.

    "I don't think anybody changed positions on that. We're just learning where everybody's coming from," the West Virginia Democrat told Capitol Hill reporters after the meeting, which included the heads of the National Urban League, the NAACP, the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation and others.

    The meeting came two days after Manchin announced in an op-ed for the Charleston Gazette-Mail that he wouldn't support the elections reform and voting rights bill, citing a lack of bipartisanship.

    Sinema voiced similar objections

    Manchin offered a watered down version of the bill, but there is zero proof that he could find 10 Republicans to go along with his bill.

    Yet, even if some of these ideas do appeal to Republicans, the path to 10 GOP votes seems incredibly steep. And it’s not hard to see why: While it’s a step down from the For the People Act, the totality of Manchin’s proposal is still an enormous win for voting rights, so much so that it would be easy to see why a GOP that has gone all-in on Trump’s election lie would reject it out of hand.

    If I'm in the 29%, nothing happens. If the 41% prevails, nothing happens. I'm good.

    Your straw men thing again and absurd at that. I say I don't want to argue with you.

    No where do I say I'm upset. You invent that I am upset.

     I tell you if you want to argue, you are going to have to find someone else. 

    You, on the other hand post all kinds of angry stuff about Manchin and Sinema and are looking for someone to defend them so you can debate that person.

    I don't "support" or defend the work of any politician or party, they have to ask for and win my vote and if elected, they work for me not the other way around.

    I analyze what they are doing and what smart political operatives are saying about them.

    I might defend something to do with personal attacks on them, but even then, my mistake, as who cares about the personal opinion of a pseudonymous person on Dagblog, really?

    One thing I really don't want to do is spend time debating with people like you who do the straw man thing consistently and don't seem to understand English sometimes. Life is too short to waste it on such things.

    No anger stuff, just facts.

    I noted why bipartisanship is a farce in many cases.

     I'm with the 41%.

    Get real, most independents aren't actually independent. The 41% probably divides into 15 15 11. You might be with the 11%

    The Republicans are working to suppress votes.

    They are making moves in states to guarantee that only Republicans can win

    I have no problem being with an 11% that fights for fair elections, if that is a true number.

    Striving for bipartisanship for bipartisanship's sake is idiotic.

    LBJ got civil rights bills passed

    Democrats got clobbered 

    Obama got health care passed

    Democrats got clobbered 

    The current GOP has made it very clear that they will not play well with others

    Tim Scott made Cory Booker look like a sucker when it came to police reform.

    If voting rights or police reform bills pass, Democrats will be punished 

    If infrastructure passes, Democrats are still likely to lose seats.

    The opposition party fights like an opposition party - horrors!

    (not that benign, but still - if we play like pussies we're gonna get rolled)

    Bernie takes to the press to pressure Manchin and Sinema - good for him - puts it out in front of voters, not just the politically inclined.

    Just a few recent examples of promoting bipartisanship; there's plenty more:

    Senators call on Biden to expel 300 Russian diplomats over Moscow embassy ban - Axios

    — Servelan (fighting fascism is job#1) (@Servelan) October 5, 2021

    Bipartisan senators call for Biden to confront Moscow over staffing ban at US embassies

    — Laura Kelly (@HelloLauraKelly) October 5, 2021

    Appreciated @jensstoltenberg’s meaningful dialogue with members of the Senate NATO Observer Group today. Our bipartisan group reaffirms the U.S.' commitment to strengthening the transatlantic alliance that has maintained our world order and global security for more than 70 years.

    — Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (@SenatorShaheen) October 5, 2021

    During #MentalIllnessAwarenessWeek, let’s work together to raise awareness, fight stigma and support the millions of Americans and thousands of West Virginians living with mental health illnesses.

    — Senator Joe Manchin (@Sen_JoeManchin) October 5, 2021

    Our fellow Americans in crisis need help which is why I recently introduced my bipartisan Crisis Care Improvement & Suicide Prevention Act to increase funding for crisis care services including call centers, mobile services and stabilization programs.

    — Senator Joe Manchin (@Sen_JoeManchin) October 5, 2021

    A bipartisan group of Senators is putting together a bill reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act which hasn't been renewed since 2013. The law provides grants for programs that help prevent and respond to domestic violence cases. @WPXI

    — Samantha Manning (@SamManningNews) October 5, 2021

    #VAWA is not about politics. It is about listening to ALL survivors and ensuring that those on the front lines working to prevent domestic and sexual violence have the tools they need.

    — Sen. Patrick Leahy (@SenatorLeahy) October 5, 2021

    Nearly two years have already passed since I joined with my friend @SenFeinstein in introducing the last #VAWA reauth. I am encouraged by the current bipartisan negotiations this Congress and I look forward to a prompt Senate intro and passage of a strong, bipartisan #VAWA4ALL

    — Sen. Patrick Leahy (@SenatorLeahy) October 5, 2021

    Members of the Senate Commerce Committee, including Sens. Amy Klobuchar, Ed Markey and Ted Cruz, said that they favored issuing subpoenas to Facebook to get the full extent of information initially disclosed by Frances Haugen, the Facebook whistleblower.

    — Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) October 5, 2021

    Washington Post: "Bipartisan group of senators support issuing subpoenas to get the full research from Facebook leaked by whistleblower Frances Haugen" $FB

    — Market Rebellion (@MarketRebels) October 5, 2021

    Plus, Frances Haugen's testimony was written so even senators and elderly bloggers could understand. via @CharlesPPierce

    — Esquire (@esquire) October 5, 2021

    The @USChamber supports and urges senators to cosponsor the “Bicameral Congressional Trade Authority Act” introduced by @SenToomey, Sen. @MarkWarner and a bipartisan group of 17 additional senators.

    — John G. Murphy (@JGodiasMurphy) October 5, 2021

    A bipartisan group of U.S. senators is questioning the wisdom of arms sales to the government of Bahrain, given its approach to human rights.

    — National Interest (@TheNatlInterest) October 3, 2021

    Alzheimer's disease is a deeply personal issue to me, as it is to millions of Americans.

    The administration needs to implement a strategy to prevent and end this disease.

    I led a group of bipartisan senators in urging @SecBecerra to address this urgent health crisis.

    — Shelley Moore Capito (@SenCapito) October 4, 2021

    Sen. Rubio, @SenGaryPeters, & @SenToddYoung applauded Senate passage of their bipartisan legislation to revamp the website.

    Read more

    — Senator Rubio Press (@SenRubioPress) October 5, 2021

    Suicide among our servicemembers is a nation crisis. We introduced a bill with @SenRobPortman to create a pilot program to use cutting-edge technology to support our troops’ mental health.

    Read more

    — Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) September 28, 2021

    We reintroduced our bipartisan bill to make veterans’ long-term care options more affordable.

    — Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) September 27, 2021

    Algorithms used by big tech to promote, suppress, & filter content are shrouded in secrecy. Consumers should have the option to engage with these sites w/o being manipulated by opaque algorithms. I’m working on 2 bipartisan bills to increase transparency & hold tech accountable.

    — Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) October 1, 2021

    Our bipartisan infrastructure bill supports a greener future for Tribal communities, providing $216 million for Tribal climate resilience, adaptation -- and community planning, design, and implementation of projects that address climate challenges.

    — Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) September 27, 2021

    On Liz Cheney & Krysten Sinema by senior columnist at The Daily Beast:

    [....] Making partisan arguments – particularly expressing what I often see as performative sentiment – is sometimes uncomfortable for me. I often think, “Okay, what can we actually do to solve the problem?” I’m pretty sure there are others who feel the same way I do.

    I’ve seen politicians publicly eviscerate each other and then act collegial or friendly backstage a few minutes later. A lot of it is theatre.

    I’ve also had people publicly attack me and then text or call me privately to make sure that we were still cool. It just had to be done for appearances [....]

    from Andrew Yang's Oct. 4 essay explaining why he was leaving the Democratic party and registering as an Independent (To be clear: he did not recommend for everyone at the current time because in many states one ends up disenfranchising oneself at primary time. But he is going to be working against political party primaries and advocating for ranked choice voting instead.)

    For those with thick skulls: the majority dislike fucking partisanship! -

    Party Favorable Ratings Near Parity; Both Viewed Negatively (Jeffrey M. Jones, Gallup) Details:

    — Opinion Today (@OpinionToday) October 5, 2021

    The majority just doesn't care about those labels anymore! Used to be you come from  a long family line of voting Democrat or Republican. NO MORE. Gone with the wind.

    Interesting - here's what real declared Independent Senators can do. They don't have to pretend they are part of one happy party that says all the same things!


    Axios: "Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) withheld support for a joint statement condemning last weekend's protests against Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) because it also wouldn't include a rebuke of her political views"

    — Josh Kraushaar (@HotlineJosh) October 7, 2021


    Already put this video from yesterday on another thread but it belongs here more. The one true Independent in the Senate and the guy who acts like he is one:

    So at least one more registered Independent Senator, maybe two. No surprise to me. 

    I'd love it if they were ALL Independent, then they'd be fulfilling what the Senate was meant to do.

    Though if Trump's influence slowly recedes and something like this becomes an actual possibility in the House, they might indeed unfortunately become Republicans.

    About the only good side effect--and even that went bad in many instances--of Trump winning the presidency was a realization that party elites of both parties were not running parties that represented the feelings of the entire electorate. Mho, two big tent parties are no longer adequate. Actually, we shouldn't even need them in this day and age.

    There is no such thing like in the past, where families voted one or the other for generations and loyality to party is passed down. Everyone decides for themselves using the internet, like it or not. The parties are obsolete, that's why they are having such difficulties courting different demographics.

    It's been interesting to see the effect of ranked choice voting experiments as well as seeing experiements of very local elections being run non-partisan, with no party affiliation...

    Great point Matt:

    Despite intense polarization on basically everything under the sun, Democrats and Republicans seemingly both agree that their takeaway from the last eighteen months is we should do nothing at all to change our public health agencies.


    — Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) October 20, 2021

    Excepting I did note the big news that a trans person was made a four-star "admiral" in our public health bureaucracy which makes apparently makes a ot extreme identitarians extremely happy, is throwing them a bone, but over which I think WHOOP DE DO! But is "they" planning to do anything about the problem of a lot of lowest common denominator work over there?

    Dr. Rachel Levine made history today when sworn in as Admiral to the US Public Health Srvc. She is the first openly trans Four-Star Officer across the Uniformed Services and the first female Four-Star Officer at the Public Health Serv Commission. #TransRightsAreHumanRights

    — (@LanceUSA70) October 19, 2021

    "the 1st X in Y to do Z", hooray!

    Yeah, i was expecting a massive revolution in healthcare, and instead it looks to be reshuffling call centers and chat boxes.

    2001 was more ambitious.

    He's mystified by her, so the writing on topic coincidentally results in a deep dive into many angles of Senatorial politics that is really helpful:

    Kyrsten Sinema Is Confounding Her Own Party. But … Why?

    By  @ FiveThirty Eight, Oct. 11

    really worth a watch - Cornyn announces that he's going to help out the missing Feinstein with a "present" vote (on a judicial confirmation) and several of the rest of them talk about how they used to do that more often

    the way Biden remembers his work in the Senate of 1994:

    very good question:

    I would maintain that the whole idea of the Senate was to have a "cosmopolitan bias", to counter the "bunch of rabble rousing yahoos" nature of the House. Not necessarily to be liberal in political philosophy, but to be the educated, temperate grownups. (See "House of Lords".)

    Except for the attention seeking wannabe celebs like Cruz, who act more like House members, I think this is also the case with a lot of Senators

    which is mainly what this thread is exploring.

    Cheney & Kinzinger get down on Sen. Cruz for his rabble rousing bullshit:

    Kinzinger continuing a serious harangue on Cruz, who, it should be noted, doesn't know how to fight back except to deflect with more silly partisan accusations:

    Senator, you’ve been given a huge position to lead and tell people truth. Yet you have squandered it on lies and abused the patriotism of those who trusted you. I will have zero regrets… will you?

    — Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) November 14, 2021

    New poll says nearly 3/4 of Arizona Democrats don't want Sinema as their Senator.

    BUT Overall, 42 percent of Arizona voters view her favorably and 45 percent view her unfavorably.  So that means a lot of Independents and Republicans are happy with her, to balance out all those unhappy Dems,

    So that means if they primary her and put up someone more economically "progressive" than her, that person will have a hard time winning against a moderate Republican, and --

    Democrats could lose their one-vote majority rule in the Senate just by that one action.


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