The Long Knives Are out for Kyrsten Sinema

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

The long knives are out for Sen. Kyrsten Sinema over her continued obstruction of Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda.

Another work week has passed and the two sides seem to be nowhere near a compromise, and one would need to be found with Sen. Joe Manchin, as well. The Arizona senator has been giving the White House the cold shoulder while she traveled to Europe to fundraise. And it’s her fundraising practices that are now forming the centerpiece of the pressure campaign against her.

CNN’s K-File, which exists to dig up dirt to help Democrats politically, shared a Politico hit yesterday that detailed how much money she’s gotten from “pharma” and “finance.”

What’s so great about this attack is that it relies on the laughable assumption that the other 48 Democrat senators who are on board with Biden’s $3.5 trillion boondoggle bill don’t also have donations from the finance and pharmaceutical sectors. Heck, Sen. Jon Ossoff was Wall Street’s #1 man during the 2020 election (which culminated in a 2021 run-off in Georgia). Nothing Sinema is doing is out of the ordinary, but the insinuation here is that she’s being bought off, and we all know how much the left hates “dark money” — unless it’s being spent on them.

But you know what this rabid, full-court press to bully her to agree with Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will accomplish? Absolutely nothing.

Sinema does not care what the left thinks of her. She has made that abundantly clear, not just in the last month, but going back to the summer, when the push to nix the filibuster really heated up. She is also acutely aware of how leverage works. Sinema has all of it, and her opponents have none. It’s really that simple. The more the left flail and attack her, the more resolved she is to defy them. For once, the pettiness of a Democrat is coming in handy.

The real question is how much abuse she’s willing to take before she does something drastic, like becoming independent. She’d clean up in Arizona under that banner, in my opinion, given her cross-party appeal. But that would probably be too easy on her detractors. I think Sinema actually likes being the maverick in her party, and if she leaves it, she loses that. Thus, I think she stays, and she causes a lot more heartache on the far-left over the near future.