Sinema defends filibuster: The ‘solution is for senators to change their behavior’
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) said it is senators’ behavior, not Senate rules such as the filibuster, that must change in order to pass legislation through the upper chamber.
“When you have a place that’s broken and not working, and many would say that’s the Senate today, I don’t think the solution is to erode the rules,” Sinema told The Wall Street Journal this week. “I think the solution is for senators to change their behavior and begin to work together, which is what the country wants us to do.”
Sinema is one of two senators, along with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who have said they are opposed to nixing the legislative filibuster, a move Democrats have been eyeing as they seek to push bills on gun control and voting rights through a 50-50 chamber. A handful of other senators, including Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) say they aren’t sold on eliminating the 60-vote threshold but are exploring the idea.
Manchin, Sinema and Coons have become known in the Senate for bucking their Democratic colleagues on several issues.
Recently, the three senators were among a group of Democrats who opposed a $15 minimum wage hike.
Although Manchin has said he is willing to reform the filibuster, but not completely do away with it, Sinema has said she does not want to change the filibuster at all.
“While eliminating the filibuster may result in some short-term legislative gains, it would deepen partisan divisions and sacrifice the long-term health of our government,” Sinema has previously said about the issue.
President Biden has recently indicated a shift in his stance on the filibuster issue calling the 60-vote requirement a “relic of the Jim Crow-era.”