Senator Kyrsten Sinema Addresses Criticism By Progressives Over BIF And Build Back Better

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Senator Kyrsten Sinema(D-AZ) in an interview with Arizona’s ABC 15(11/19/21)

***Updated 12/3/21 to include Sen Sinema’s interview with CNN’s Lauren Fox***

On the day the House passed the Build Back Better Act(Nov 19), Senator Kyrsten Sinema(D-AZ) sat down for an interview with Arizona’s ABC 15(KNXV), to discuss what lies ahead for the historic bill in the Senate. It is no secret that a lot of Democrats, especially Progressive Democrats, have been very upset with Senators Sinema and Joe Manchin(D-WV), over what they perceive as a coordinated effort by the two Senators to derail President Biden’s legislative agenda.

Asked by the ABC 15‘s host about the sharp, even personal criticism she regularly receives from Progressives regarding her perceived obstruction of the Build Back Better Act and other key Democratic legislative proposals(voting rights etc), Senator Sinema responded: “When I first was elected to head to Washington DC and represent Arizona about 9 years ago, I promised to be a work horse, not a show horse, and that’s exactly what I’ve done over these last 9 years. In the 3 years that I’ve served in the United States Senate, I’ve been known for just putting my head down and doing the work. And my experience is, if you want to negotiate and get to an agreement on difficult topics, the best way to do that is to build trust, and when you’re building trust with someone, you work one on one, you solve the problem, you stay focused, and you don’t get distracted by the noise outside. Now, I know that a lot of folks wanted to hear that noise outside, but they probably didn’t have the same goal as me, which is to negotiate and pass a historic infrastructure bill into law, and I guess I would just say the proof is in the pudding. Here we are today, the bill has become law, and we move on to the next topic, which is to implement it for the benefit of every day Arizonans. So while there are some who may not like this approach, it works, and I think it represents what Arizonans elected me to do, which is to put my head down, get the work done, and deliver results for every day families. “

There’s no other way to interpret Senator Sinema’s response, especially her work horse versus show horse analogy, other than she looks at her Progressive critics as a bunch of drama kings/queens who are either unwilling or unable to do the hard work of negotiating with the opposing party(Republicans)to advance legislation. Senator Sinema added that her approach, which involves quietly negotiating with Republicans produces results, as opposed to the unproductive “noise” which she attributed to Progressives.

In what could turn out to be a problem for the Build Back Better Act in the Senate, Senator Sinema later in the interview, raised concerns about the bill worsening the already alarming inflation problem. It’s highly likely that Senator Manchin will also raise similar inflation concerns, which may lead to the gutting of some popular Progressive items like paid family leave from the Build Back Better Act. A gutted Build Back Better Act may prove non-palatable to House Progressives thereby killing the bill, or extending it’s passage well into 2022, a tough election year for Democrats.

Bottom line folks, it was good to see Senator Sinema, often shrouded in secrecy, talking extensively to the media about her stance on the Build Back Better Act and other issues important to her constituents. Hopefully this is the beginning of a more “public” Senator Sinema.

Senator Sinema has since sat down with CNN’s Lauren Fox(12/2/21) where she expressed similar reservations about the House-passed Build Back Better Act

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Reports Of Growing Tension Between Trump And Gov DeSantis Over 2024 Election

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CNN’s Gabby Orr reported on New Day(11/19/21) that tension is growing between former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis over the 2024 election. Trump is apparently upset that Gov DeSantis has not yet stated publicly that he won’t challenge him for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, if he decides to run. Trump is reportedly fuming to close aides, telling them that he “made” DeSantis.

If this reporting holds, it will be the clearest sign yet, that Gov DeSantis’ rise in the national GOP ranks, and his potential 2024 presidential run, has caught Trump’s attention, and not in a good way.

Gabby Orr told New Day Host **John Berman: “As Donald Trump tracks very closely what Republican presidential hopefuls for 2024 have said about challenging him if he does decide to go for a third presidential run, he has been increasingly irritated with the cardinal sin that Governor Ron DeSantis is committing, by not saying anything of the sort. He has not come out and said ‘I will not challenge Donald Trump if he decides to run in 2024’, he has not even said that he is interested in 2024 and that, according to aides to Donald Trump…is really irking the former President. My colleague Steve Contorno and I talked to several people close to both DeSantis and Donald Trump who said, there is a noticeable strain on the relationship and that [former]President Trump will not be satisfied until Ron DeSantis comes out and unequivocally says he will not challenge the former president in a GOP presidential primary.

Gabby Orr added that while Trump is not personally attacking Gov DeSantis in his private conversations with allies, he is constantly reminding them that he “made” DeSantis, an obvious implication that DeSantis should be loyal to him. Trump’s craving for loyalty pledges is nothing new. The only question is whether rising GOP star DeSantis will clip his wings to appease him as we head towards 2024.

Bottom line folks, the 2024 GOP presidential primary will be a Trumpism referendum–whether the Republican Party continues with Trump as it’s leader, or whether the party settles on someone else–a Ron DeSantis, Chris Christie, Mike Pompeo, Nikki Haley–as the new flag bearer. It will be very interesting to see how Florida Governor DeSantis navigates the choppy waters ahead, now that he knows he has TeamTrump scared.

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GOP Congressman Introduced DOJ Official Who Tried To Overturn Georgia’s Election Results To Trump

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Rep Scott Perry(R-PA) With Trump At A MAGA Rally

CNN Political Correspondent Sara Murray reported on New Day (10/13/2021) that Rep Scott Perry (R-PA) is facing renewed scrutiny over his role in the January 6th DC insurrection, because he is the one who introduced Jeffrey Clark to then President Donald Trump. Jeffrey Clark is the former senior Department of Justice(DOJ) official who went as far as drafting a letter that was supposed to be sent to the Georgia legislature, informing them that the 2020 election results were under DOJ investigation, thereby giving the Republican-controlled legislature an excuse for not certifying the 2020 election results. Jeffrey Clark’s attempts to grossly abuse DOJ powers to keep Trump in office, has naturally raised questions as to why Rep Perry introduced him to Trump in the first place.

New Day host Brianna Keilar:“Okay[Rep]Perry introduced Trump to Jeffrey Clark. How did Perry know Jeffrey Clark?

Sara Murray:“This is a big outstanding mystery. We’ve asked Perry’s office multiple times, they’ve not responded to our questions. Even in these reports, these DOJ officials say it was never clear how this Congressman from Pennsylvania had this relationship with Jeffrey Clark, how he came to facilitate introductions to President Trump, and even an Oval Office meeting with Trump and Clark in it.”

It also bears pointing out that Rep Perry was one of the most vocal House Republicans parroting Trump’s false claims that the 2020 elections had somehow been rigged against him–“the big lie”. This raises more questions as to why Rep Perry introduced Jeffrey Clark to Trump. Was Rep Perry also involved in drafting the letter that was intended for the Republican-controlled Georgia legislature?

Bottom line folks, Rep Scott Perry is definitely someone who needs to testify before the January 6th Commission. Reasonable people will agree that a sitting member of Congress who not only actively pushed Trump’s “big lie”, but also enlisted a corrupt DOJ official to abuse his position in furtherance of the same “big lie”, should be thoroughly grilled by the January 6th Commission.

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Meeting Between Biden Admin Officials And Saudi Prince At Center Of Khashoggi Murder Raises Eyebrows

Saudi Arabia’s Prince Khalid bin Salman with Biden’s National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan

Senior Biden administration officials, including Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, reportedly met with Saudi’s Prince Khalid bin Salman, who is the brother of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman(MBS), and former Ambassador to the United States. Prince Khalid’s high level welcome to the United States has naturally shocked and angered human rights activists because our very own CIA pinpointed him as one of the masterminds behind the killing of former Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Specifically, the CIA said that it was Prince Khalid who lured Khashoggi into the Istanbul consulate where he was later killed.

Washington Post Columnist and CNN Political Analyst Josh Rogin told New Day host John Berman:“The Biden administration is trying to have it’s cake and eat it too. They want to say that they are being tough on Saudi Arabia for it’s atrocious and worsening human rights record, at the same time they want to do business with Saudi Arabia on areas of mutual interest, and I get that. But the way that they decided to do that was by welcoming back the former Ambassador, Khalid bin Salman, the brother of Mohammed bin Salman[MBS], the guy who the CIA asserts was responsible for the murder and dismemberment of Washington Post contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi. And the allegation by the U.S. intelligence services, is that his brother Khalid lured him into the Istanbul consulate where he was later murdered…..So it seems like a weird thing to invite the guy who was connected to the murder back to have a bunch of pictures and give him the red carpet treatment, and let him meet with Defense Secretary and the National Security Adviser. It sends the signal to the Saudis, and to the region, and to the human rights community frankly, that the Biden administration’s protestations against Saudi atrocities are just that, just words, and not actions. It signals a return to business as usual….It also insults the legacy of Jamal Khashoggi, and reneges on Biden’s promise to deliver justice to Jamal and his family.”

Bottom line folks, for a Biden administration that is usually very fine-tuned and on-message, one has to admit that granting Prince Khalid a high profile welcome despite the CIA’s findings on Khashoggi’s murder, was quite an uncharacteristic blunder by the administration. More importantly, this blunder unnecessarily dings the Biden administration’s stance and messaging on human rights. Surely somebody at Biden’s White House should have foreseen and prevented this “unforced error” of immense magnitude.

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GOP’s Deficit Arguments Have Become So Ridiculous, They’re Laughable–LITERALLY!!

Chris Wallace, the host of Fox News Sunday, laughs at Sen Roy Blunt’s ridiculous response to a question about deficits (4/4/2021)

Senator Roy Blunt(R-MO) appeared on Fox News Sunday (4/4/2021) where host Chris Wallace asked him a direct question as to whether Republicans had lost all credibility regarding deficits, given the way they allowed spending to balloon under Trump, even before the covid-19 pandemic. Host Chris Wallace was basically asking Senator Blunt why the public should take GOP’s opposition to President Biden’s infrastructure proposal seriously, given their spending habits under Trump.

Chris Wallace asked Sen Blunt: “During the Trump presidency, even before the pandemic, the national debt increased by more than $3 trillion, and in 2017, every Republican in the Senate including you, voted for the big Trump tax cuts, which cut revenue by almost one and half trillion dollars, so I guess the question is….hasn’t the Republican Party lost credibility on this issue?”

Even though Chris Wallace’s question was specifically directed at GOP spending under Trump before the pandemic, Senator Blunt’s entire response focused on GOP’s actions after the pandemic. This was such a ridiculous dodge by Senator Blunt, that Chris Wallace burst out laughing, reiterating for the record, “I just want to make it clear. When I talked about the increase in debt during the Trump years, I did it purposely before the pandemic started.”

Bottom line folks, this should serve as a message to Democrats out there, freaking out about a “GOP Tsunami in 2022” brought about by some imaginary “deficits backlash” due to President Biden’s infrastructure plan. As Senator Blunt’s performance on Fox News Sunday clearly shows, Republicans have no legs to stand on when it comes to deficits, given their actions under Trump. Voters will treat such arguments in 2022 the same way host Chris Wallace did–laugh them off. Simply put, Democrats must go big and bold on infrastructure.

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Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Is Calling For A $10 Trillion Over 10 Years Infrastructure Plan

Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez(D-NY) On The Rachel Maddow Show (03/31/2021)

Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) appeared on the 03/31/2021 edition of MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow show(TRMS), to discuss the $2 trillion infrastructure plan President Biden had announced earlier the same day. Rep Ocasio-Cortez (aka AOC), told host Maddow that her Progressive colleagues in the House will “absolutely” push for a figure higher than the $2 trillion set out by President Biden, adding that her personal preference would be a $10 trillion over 10 years infrastructure plan.

AOC’s full interview on TRMS is available here, but the relevant clip is below.

Specifically, AOC told Maddow in response to a question as to whether Progressives in the House will push for a figure bigger than $2 trillion: “Absolutely. You know if we could wave a magic wand, and Progressives in the House were able to name any number and get it through, which obviously isn’t the case, but if we are looking at ideals and what we think is the actual investment that can create tens of millions of good union jobs in this country, that can shore up our healthcare, our infrastructure, our housing, and doing it in a way that draws down our carbon emissions to help us get in line with IPCC standards, we are talking about realistically, $10 trillion over 10 years.” AOC added that even though $10 trillion is an “eye popping” figure, it is not in any way unrealistic.

Basically, AOC’s message on TRMS was that even though House Progressives are very appreciative of President Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure proposal, they are looking at the $2 trillion as a starting point, and not necessarily the ceiling. Progressives in the House will work hard for a higher figure. This promises to be quite an interesting battle in Congress, especially given the fact that in the recently passed American Rescue Plan(Covid), House negotiations began at $1.9 trillion and worked their way downwards. It appears for infrastructure, the House negotiations will begin at $2 trillion and possibly end up much higher. Will AOC’s $10 trillion wish come true? Hmm–time will tell.

Bottom line folks, as AOC correctly pointed out, if one considers the fact that for covid relief, Congress passed a one year $1.9 trillion package, it is not unreasonable to assume that for an infrastructure plan, we would need much more than the $2 trillion proposed by President Biden. It is a good thing that AOC threw the $10 trillion figure out there because it will inspire some imagination among House Democrats as to what’s possible–thinking big. Simply put, even though passing a “skinny” infrastructure plan is better than no infrastructure plan at all, House Democrats should not look at President Biden’s $2 trillion proposal as a limiting factor, but instead, like AOC, come up with their own imaginative ideas as to how to revamp our dilapidated infrastructure. All in all, let there be a robust infrastructure debate in Congress, and may the best ideas win.

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Sean Hannity Busted For Lying About “Spontaneous” Presidents Day Crowd For Trump In Florida

On the 02/16/2021 edition of her show CNN Newsroom, host Brianna Keilar masterfully deconstructed the lie perpetrated by Sean Hannity and his friends at Fox News, that a “spontaneous” crowd came out to greet former President Trump in Florida on Presidents Day. Hannity and his friends at Fox News, were of course attempting to use the “spontaneous” crowd lie to perpetuate this perception that Trump is still very popular among the base, and should continue as leader of the GOP.

Sean Hannity said on Presidents Day, “A few hours ago, spontaneously, thousands of people in Palm Beach, lined up in support of the former president as his motorcade travelled through Florida. I have a question [Senators] Mitch McConnell, John Thune, how come you’ve never had this kind of enthusiasm at any of your events?” Hannity then went on to interview Trump’s son Donald Trump, Jr asking him, “Looking at your dad coming back from golf, did you see thousands of people out of nowhere? Nobody organized it that I can see, and certainly nobody associated with your father that I know of, do you?” Trump, Jr responded, “No. This is totally organic and again, it just shows that the American people are with Donald Trump.” The full CNN segment is available here but the relevant Hannity clip is below.

Turns out per Brianna Keilar, there was nothing spontaneous about the crowd that turned out to greet former President Trump on Presidents Day, and importantly, Sean Hannity knew this while he was lying on his show. Brianna Keilar then went on to demonstrate how these flagrant lies by Hannity and his pals at Fox News are not only harming our democracy, but also literally tearing families apart. She gave the heartbreaking example of Rep Adam Kinzinger, who is now considered to be in the “devil’s army” by some members of his family, who have confessed to believing the words of Hannity and company religiously. This means others in the mainstream media must follow Brianna Keilar’s lead and confront the flagrant lies emanating from Hannity and his friends at Fox News.

Bottom line folks, after the unfortunate events of the January 6th DC insurrection, which was primarily based on lies spread on Fox News and other right wing media outlets, we can no longer let the network self-police itself. It is very important for the public to call out the flagrant lies coming out of Fox News and other right wing media outlets, as Brianna Keilar routinely does. Simply put, we must not allow the lies emanating from Fox News and other right wing media outlets to go unchallenged. As a matter of fact, it is high time we started chronicling and keeping track of who is saying what on these right wing channels so that when another Jan 6th-like incident happens, we know exactly who to pin the blame on. Good stuff Brianna Keilar, as always.

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The Kamala Harris-Biden Conundrum For Democrats

Yours Truly has repeatedly said despite opposing viewpoints by paid mainstream media pundits that U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) is the presumptive favorite to win the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination for the 2020 elections. Yours Truly began saying this way back in April 2018 with this post and has repeated the assertion through the various iterations of the popular #Dem2020Poll.

Senator Kamala Harris’ political stardom hit mainstream media pundits like a brick between the eyes this past Thursday (06/27/2019) following her stellar debate performance where she methodically cast Biden as a racial segregation sympathizer–a near fatal blow in the eyes of the ethnically diverse Democratic Party voting base. Sen Kamala Harris all but busted the grassroots Democrats’ fantasies of a Biden-Harris no-brainer ticket.

Clearly Yours Truly has been way ahead of the curve touting Sen Kamala Harris’ political stardom(deserved chest-thumping) so it’s only fair that Yours Truly also direct your attention to a potential quagmire the Kamala Harris stardom may pose to the Dem presidential chances in 2020–the aforementioned Kamala Harris-Biden conundrum. Here’s how it plays out.

Most political pundits agree that Joe Biden would be a great general election candidate for Democrats in 2020 because he has a chance of winning back the rural White Obama voters who Trump won in 2016. The same political pundits also agree that a Joe Biden-Kamala Harris ticket in 2020 would be unstoppable–a no-brainer ticket if you will. There is a problem however for Democrats with this seemingly easy solution to the Trump problem. As Yours Truly stated in these tweets, there is a very strong possibility that Sen Kamala Harris will beat Joe Biden for the Democratic Party’s nomination effectively busting the Biden-Harris fantasy.

How then do Democrats turn around and tell Sen Kamala Harris, “Congratulations for winning the nominations but we’d be better off with the no-brainer Biden-Harris ticket?” Political pundits agree that Sen Harris would be a terrific general election candidate in any other presidential election cycle but going up against Trump, with the attendant race-baiting that is sure to ensue, there’a a very good chance she may lose the general election for reasons that have nothing to do with her qualifications. Simply put, even though the modern Democratic Party is more inclined to nominate a Kamala Harris, the fact of the matter is that against Trump, Biden is a better general election candidate and more importantly a Biden-Harris ticket is a sure winner in 2020. What to do about this tricky 2020 situation confronting Democrats as we go through the nomination process is one that deserves a lot of open and frank debate among the party faithful especially given the fact that the desire to unseat Trump in 2020 appears to trump everything else (forgive the pun).

Bottom line as we go through the excitement of the presidential nomination process, we as Democrats also need to start seriously thinking about the conundrum the Trump presidency poses on the Democratic Party’s nomination process. How do we make sure that the person we nominate to go up against Trump is also the best general election candidate? These are the tough topics Yours Truly hopes paid mainstream media pundits will expound on as the presidential nomination contest progresses. The 2020 presidential election is still very far away and a lot of twists and turns are bound to take place and therefore as Trump famously says, “we’ll see what happens.” Also importantly, if Sen Harris ends up as the 2020 Dem nominee, please make sure to remind the “expert” presidential prognosticators (Nate Silver, et al) that the real deal @emolclause has arrived!!

Beto O’Rourke Leading The 2020 Dem Presidential Sweepstakes

Beto O’Rourke

As was expected, the Dem presidential nomination fight began in earnest the day after the November 2018 elections with several Democrats either outrightly declaring their intention to run for president in 2020 or strongly hinting at that.

Several months prior to the November 2018 elections, Yours Truly began running the popular #Dem2020Poll to gauge who grassroots Democrats favored as their presidential nominee in 2020. The results of the #Dem2020Poll initially showed Senator Kamala Harris(D-CA) and Rep Joe Kennedy III as the top contenders for the 2020 Dem presidential nomination with more people favoring a Harris/Kennedy ticket.

However in May 2018, following speculation that former Vice President Joe Biden was considering a presidential run, he immediately shot to the top of the #Dem2020Poll with most people preferring a Biden/Harris ticket.

In September 2018 Sen Kamala Harris shot back to the top of the Dem 2020 presidential sweepstakes due to the Kavanaugh Supreme Court hearings.

Well it appears everything has changed after the November 2018 elections and grassroots Democrats now overwhelmingly want Texas Democrat Beto O’Rourke to either head the 2020 presidential ticket or be someone’s running mate.

At this juncture it is also important to address the Bernie Sanders issue. Yours Truly has deliberately left him out in previous #Dem2020Polls because he is not a registered Democrat. This issue has caused a lot of controversy and division among grassroots Dems so for the sake of party cohesion, Bernie Sanders now features in all the polls. Beyond the party cohesion argument, reasonable people will agree that a #Dem2020Poll without Bernie Sanders is not realistic/credible because like him or not, he has a lot of support among registered Democrats.

Bottom line 2020 is still very far away and a lot of twists and turns are bound to take place. As Trump himself regularly says, “We’ll see what happens.”


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